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RTIPs Meet Up with Nancy Schoenberg about "Faith Moves Mountains"

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We are delighted that the intervention "Faith Moves Mountains (FMM)" has been added to the RTIPs repository.  I welcome the opportunity to talk more about it on R2R.

Appalachian communities are disproportionately affected by many of the leading risk factors associated with cancer incidence and mortality, factors amenable to primary and secondary prevention. Extensive involvement with our community partners has demonstrated strong community preference for a holistic approach toward cancer prevention.

Faith Moves Mountains (FMM) draws on the assets of local communities—strength of social ties, respect and trust afforded to faith institutions, and the dynamism and commitment of local citizens to improve the lives of others—in combination with scientific frameworks and principles.

Women are recruited to participate through their faith-based institution (e.g., church), where they complete a baseline assessment to identify their barriers to screening (e.g., transportation, lack of health insurance, attitudes regarding cervical cancer and screening). Subsequently, the lay health advisor (LHA), who is demographically similar to participants and may be a member of the faith institution, prepares a 4-page newsletter tailored to address the screening barriers the participant identified in the baseline assessment.

The LHA schedules a 2-hour home visit with the participant a month after the baseline assessment. During this visit, they

·         provide education on cervical cancer and screening;

·         review the participant’s barriers and strategies for overcoming them, with support from the tailored newsletter; and

·         develop an action plan to address each of the participant’s screening barriers.

If the participant agrees, the LHA provides assistance in contacting the participant’s health care provider or free or low-cost health clinics to schedule a Pap test before leaving the home. Two weeks after the home visit, the LHA contacts the participant to address any participant questions and to inquire about any progress made with the action plan.

I appreciate that other researchers and practitioners have implemented faith-based and faith-placed interventions.  I look forward to a robust discussion.