Background: Absence or low uptake of Pap smear is probably the main barrier for high incidence of cervical cancer. Aim: To assess the knowledge, practice, attitude, main barriers and motivating factors of Pap smear among Omani women. Methods: Cross-secal survey in a tertiary referral hospital. The participants were divided into three groups: the patients who attended Outpatient Gynecology Department in Sultan Qaboos University Hospital (SQUH), Oman, the female staff from SQUH, College of Medicine and Health Science and College of Nursing at Sultan Qaboos University (SQU) and the graduating female students at SQU. Results: There were 204 patients, 133 staff, and 157 students. The knowledge of Pap smear among patients, staff and students was as follows: 56.9%, 56.4% and 23.6%, respectively. Those who had an adequate knowledge, 36.8% patients, 23.3% staff and 0.0% students performed Pap smear. Those who performed Pap smear, 32.4% of patients were reminded by their health professionals and 23.3% of staff understood the importance of Pap smear. The common barrier that prevents the uptake of Pap smear among the three groups was their belief that they have a healthy lifestyle. All the groups (70 - 96%) believed that Pap smear can lead to more successful prevention and treatment for cervical cancer. Conclusions: The findings of this study show poor knowledge and performance of Pap smear and good attitude towards Pap smear. More public health education is required to inform the community about the importance of Pap smear as well as to strengthen the curriculum taught in undergraduate university.
- cervical cancer
- Pap smear
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health