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Oral Cancer Screening Intentions of Residents in Eastern Taiwan

Authors: Chi-Shan Chen, Mao-Chou Hsu, Feng-Chuan Pan


The incidence of oral cancer in Taiwan increased year by year. It replaced the nasopharyngeal as the top incurrence among head and neck cancers since 1994. Early examination and earlier identification for earlier treatment is the most effective medical treatment for these cancers. Although the government fully subsidized the expenses with tremendous promotion program for oral cancer screening, the citizen-s participation remained low. Purpose of this study is to understand the factors affecting the citizens- behavior intensions of taking an oral cancer screening. Based on the Theory of Planned Behavior, this study adopted four distinctive variables in explaining the captioned behavior intentions.700 questionnaires were dispatched with 500 valid responses or 71.4% returned by the citizens with an age 30 or above from the eastern counties of Taiwan. Test results has shown that attitude toward, subjective norms of, and perceived behavioral control over the oral cancer screening varied from some demographic factors to another. The study proofed that attitude toward, subjective norms of, and perceived behavioral control over the oral cancer screening had positive impacts on the corresponding behavior intention. The test concluded that the theory of planned behavior was appropriate as a theoretical framework in explaining the influencing factors of intentions of taking oral cancer screening. This study suggested the healthcare professional should provide high accessibility of screening services other than just delivering knowledge on oral cancer to promote the citizens- intentions of taking the captioned screening. This research also provided a practical implication to the healthcare professionals when formulating and implementing promotion instruments for lifting the screening rate of oral cancer.

Keywords: Theory of planned behavior, oral cancer, cancer screening

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