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Appears in Collections:Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Predicting reattendance to the second round of the Maltese national breast screening programme: An analytical descriptive study
Author(s): Marmarà, Danika
Marmarà, Vincent
Hubbard, Gill
Keywords: Breast cancer Screening
Second invitation
Issue Date: Dec-2019
Citation: Marmarà D, Marmarà V & Hubbard G (2019) Predicting reattendance to the second round of the Maltese national breast screening programme: An analytical descriptive study. BMC Public Health, 19, Art. No.: 189.
Abstract: Background: A range of barriers influence women's uptake to a first breast screening invitation. Few studies however, have examined factors associated with second screening uptake. This study follows Maltese women to explore predictors and behaviours to re-attendance, and to determine if uptake of first invitation to the Maltese Breast Screening Programme (MBSP) is a significant predictor of second screening uptake. Methods: A prospective study was conducted to determine factors associated with re-attendance for 100 women invited to the second MBSP round. Records of women's second attendance to the MBSP were extracted in January 2016 from the MBSP database. Data were analyzed using chi-square tests, Independent Samples t-test, Mann Whitney test, Shapiro Wilk test and logistic regression. Results: There were no significant associations for sociodemographic or health status variables with second screening uptake (p > 0.05), except breast condition (Fisher's exact test, p = 0.046). Non-attendees at second screening were most unsure of screening frequency recommendations (χ2 = 9.580, p = 0.048). Attendees were more likely to perceive their susceptibility to breast cancer (p = 0.041), believed breast cancer to be life changing (p = 0.011) and considered cues to action to aid attendance (p = 0.028). Non-attendees were in stronger agreement on mammography pain (p = 0.008) and were less likely to consider cues to action (15.4% non-attendees vs 1.4% attendees) (p = 0.017 respectively). 'Perceived barriers', 'breast cancer identity', 'causes' and 'consequences' were found to be significant predictors of second screening uptake, with 'perceived barriers' being the strongest. The inclusion of illness perception items improved the regression model's accuracy in predicting non-attendance to the second screening round (84.6% vs 30.8%). First screening uptake was found to be a significant predictor of subsequent uptake (OR = 0.102; 95% CI = 0.037, 0.283; p = 0.000). Conclusions: Interventions to increase uptake should target first invitees since attending for the first time is a strong predictor of uptake to the second cycle. Further research is required given the small sample. Particular attention should be paid to women who did not respond to their first invite or are unsure or reluctant participants initially.
DOI Link: 10.1186/s12889-019-6507-9
Rights: © The Author(s). 2019 This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

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