Initial Analysis for Program Planning Needs Assessment




Breast Cancer among African American Women in the United States

Student’s Name


Breast Cancer among African American Women in the United States

Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer affecting women in entire world, and in the United States it is one of the most leading causes of cancer death. Irrespective of the major improvements made in breast cancer detection, diagnosis as well as prevention, studies indicate that African American women are still disproportionately affected by breast cancer (The American Cancer Society, 2012). Compared with White women, Black American women have higher mortality rates and are highly likely to be diagnosed with the disease before the age of 40 years. Breast cancer incidence and mortality rates trends demonstrate varying patterns among different races. Whereas African American women have lower lifetime risk of suffering from breast cancer, they have a higher mortality rates than white American women (Allicock et al., 2013). The American Cancer Society (2012) found that White women have a 90 percent five-year survival white African Americans have a five-year survival rate of 78 percent, which is lower than that of other racial as well as ethnic groups in the United States. Some of the causes of the inequality include inequalities in wealth, education, overall standard of living, work, housing as well as education and barriers to quality cancer prevention, detection as well as treatment services (Leading Health Indicators, n.d.).

Impact of Breast Cancer on African American Women Patients

More than 50 percent of persons with cancer suffer from psychotic disorders, with anxiety and depressions being the most significant psychopathological comorbidities (Villar et al. 2017). At least 33 percent of persons with breast cancer can experience psychopathological disorders (Villar et al. 2017). Normally psychological morbidity is influenced by various concomitant as well as background factors that affect not only an individual’s quality of life, but also psychic functions. Davis et al. (2014) found associations between anxiety and some biopsychosocial predictors among African American women with cancer. The researchers indicated effects of anxiety, related high anxiety levels with intensification of physical symptoms as well as increase in the perception of adverse implications of treatments. Lewis et al. (2013), in their study found that all but one African American woman with cancer acknowledged the need for emotional as well as functional support during diagnosis. Seventy percent of the respondents recalled requiring support and another 56 percent functional support with their day to day tasks. However, more African American women with cancer at 68 percent reported receiving financial support than emotional support at 58 percent. More than 36 percent required more emotional support during diagnosis (Lewis et al., 2013),

In addition to nurses’ interventions, various studies have examined the impact of exercise programs among cancer patients to improve the quality of life. Pinto, Waldemore and Rosen (2015) conducted a randomized controlled trial in conjunction with a community-based organization to examine the impact of peer mentoring in promotion of physical activity among cancer survivors. The researchers identified five main themes that can guide the planning and implementation of partnerships between evidence-based programs and community-based programs. The five themes include cost of partnership, the benefit of partnership, matching of trial goals with the community-based organizations missions, achievement of a balance between job tasks as well as research and importance of communication. The researchers conducted structured telephone interviews with 10 stakeholders at different job levels within the community-based organizations.

Impact of Peer Mentoring Programs on African American Cancer Patients

Can collaboration between peer mentoring programs and community-based organizations among cancer survivors help reduce the incidence and mortality rates as well as the psychopathological impacts of breast cancer among African American women?


Allicock, M., Graves, N., Gray, K., & Troester, M. (2013). African American women’s perspectives on breast cancer: Implications for communicating risk of basal-like breast cancer. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 24(2), 753–767. doi:10.1353/hpu.2013.0082

American Cancer Society. (2012). Cancer facts and figures for African Americans 2011–2012. Atlanta, GA: American Cancer Society

Davis, C. M., Myers, H. F., Nyamathi, A. M., Brecht, M. L., Lewis, M. A., & Hamilton, N. (2014). Biopsychosocial predictors of psychological functioning among African American breast cancer survivors. Journal of psychosocial oncology, 32(5), 493-516.

Leading Health Indicators. (n.d.). Retrieved March 22, 2017, from

Lewis, P. E., Sheng, M., Rhodes, M. M., Jackson, K. E., & Schover, L. R. (2012). Psychosocial concerns of young African American breast cancer survivors. Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, 30(2), 168-184.

Pinto, B.M., Waldemore, M., & Rosen, R. (2015). A community-based partnership to promote exercise among cancer survivors: Lessons learned. International Journal Behavioral Medicine, 22, 328–335

Villar, R. R., Fernández, S. P., Garea, C. C., Pillado, M., Barreiro, V. B., & Martín, C. G. (2017). Quality of life and anxiety in women with breast cancer before and after treatment. The Latin American Journal of Nursing25(2958), 1-13.