Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health

, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp 244–248 | Cite as

Rate of Cervical Cancer Screening Associated with Immigration Status and Number of Years Since Immigration in Ontario, Canada

  • Amole Khadilkar
  • Yue Chen
Original Paper


Cervical cancer screening is a vital public health measure intended to reduce the morbidity and mortality from what is a largely preventable cancer. Previous Canadian studies have documented that immigrants have significantly lower Papanicolaou (Pap) testing rates than women born in Canada. However, the impact of number of years since immigration is less clear. Data were taken from the 2007–2008 Canadian Community Health Survey. Responses from 16, 706 women living in Ontario, Canada were included. The focus was on self-reported Pap testing rates within the last 3 years, immigrant status and number of years since immigration. A robust Poisson regression model was used to determine prevalence ratios (PR) with 95 % confidence intervals (CIs) after adjustment for covariates. The results demonstrated that recent immigrant women (less than 10 years in Canada) were less likely to have had a Pap test in the past 3 years than those who were Canadian-born (PR = 0.77; 95 % CI: 0.71, 0.84). In contrast, immigrants who had lived in Canada for 10 years or longer showed similar compliance with recommended Pap testing intervals as non-immigrants. Higher income, higher level of education, younger age and being married were independently associated with better Pap testing rates. A strategy targeting recent immigrants to Canada is needed to promote Pap testing in this population and reduce their risk of invasive cervical cancer.


Acculturation Cervical cancer Health survey Immigrants Papanicolaou smear Screening 



Canadian Community Health Survey




Prevalence ratio


Confidence interval


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Epidemiology and Community Medicine, Faculty of MedicineUniversity of OttawaOttawaCanada

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