McSherry LA, O'Leary E, Dombrowski S, Francis J, Martin C, O'Leary J & Sharp L (2018) Which primary care practitioners have poor human papillomavirus (HPV) knowledge? A step towards informing the development of professional education initiatives. PLoS One, 13 (12), Art. No.: e0208482. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0208482
Primary care practitioners (PCP) play key roles in cervical cancer prevention. Human papillomavirus (HPV) knowledge is an important influence on PCPs’ cervical cancer prevention-related behaviours. We investigated HPV knowledge, and associated factors, among general practitioners (GPs) and practice nurses.
A survey, including factual questions about HPV infection and vaccination, was mailed to GPs and practice nurses in Ireland. Multivariable logistic regression was used to determine which PCPs had low knowledge (questions correctly answered: infection ≤5/11; vaccination: ≤4/10). Questions least often answered correctly were identified.
697 PCPs participated. For HPV infection, GPs and practice nurses answered a median of nine and seven questions correctly, respectively (p⅓ of PCPs.
There are important limitations in HPV infection and vaccination knowledge among PCPs. By identifying factors associated with poor knowledge, and areas of particular uncertainty, these results can inform development of professional education initiatives thereby ensuring women have access to uniformly high-quality HPV-related information and advice.
PLoS One: Volume 13, Issue 12