Hepatitis B screening in the Turkish-Dutch population in Rotterdam, the Netherlands; qualitative assessment of socio-cultural determinants

van der Veen, Ytje J. J.; de Zwart, Onno; Voeten, Hélène A. C. M.; Mackenbach, Johan P.; Richardus, Jan Hendrik
January 2009
BMC Public Health;2009, Vol. 9 Issue 1, p328
Academic Journal
Background: Hepatitis B is an important health problem in the Turkish community in the Netherlands. Increased voluntary screening is necessary in this community, to detect individuals eligible for treatment and to prevent further transmission of the disease. Methods: We investigated socio-cultural determinants associated with hepatitis B screening in male and female, first and second generation Turkish migrants, by means of Focus Group Discussions. Results: Socio-cultural themes related to hepatitis B screening were identified; these were social norm, social support, sensitivity regarding sexuality, reputation, responsiveness to authority, religious responsibility, cleanliness and religious doctrine regarding health and disease, and the perceived efficacy of Dutch health care services. Motivating factors were the (religious) responsibility for one's health, the perceived obligation when being invited for screening, and social support to get tested for hepatitis B. Perceived barriers were the association of hepatitis B screening with STDs or sexual activity, the perception of low control over one's health, and the perceived low efficacy of the Dutch health care services. Reputation could act as either a motivator or barrier. Conclusion: This study identified relevant socio-cultural themes related to hepatitis B screening, which may serve to customize interventions aimed at the promotion of voluntary hepatitis B screening in the Turkish-Dutch population in the Netherlands.


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