16 Dec 2008

American Samoa cancer study at village level

4:13 pm on 16 December 2008

A cancer research project in American Samoa is being described as one that goes into the village setting more than any other research study.

The research is centred on a survey developed by Dr Trudie Sala and aims to measure the knowledge, attitudes and beliefs of the Samoan women who live in the Fofo County, which includes Leone village.

Dr Sala will be visiting 600 households in the county and conducting interviews with the female heads of each household.

The programme director for the Community Cancer Network, Luana Scanlan, says Dr Sala, who is from Leone village, has been able to develop village research protocol, which hasn't existed before this.

"The actual traditional permission from the leaders of the village for researchers to come in and access the people and gather information, gather data. She recieved the approval both the Leone village council, the women's council. So she's gone into the village setting much more than any other research project has done before."

Luana Scanlan says American Samoa's screening levels are lower than they are in the USA, and among Polynesians in America in general.