Background: Despite knowledge about HPV may be an important determinant for vaccine acceptance and uptake, only few studies have assessed HPV-related knowledge in young females. The aim of this study was to assess the reliability and validity of the questionnaire, in Italian women ≥18 years old, as a tool to examine knowledge, attitudes and behaviors towards screening and vaccination against HPV and reliable source of information. Methods: The questionnaire was administered to 30 girls in anonymous, voluntary and self -administered form with close-ended type of questions, except for the socio-demographic characteristics. It was composed in 3 sections for a total of 69 items. Participation in the study was entirely voluntary and anonymous. Descriptive analyses were performed using frequencies, percentages, and frequency table for categorical variables. Reliability analysis was tested and content validity was evaluated using Cronbach's alpha to check internal consistency and avoid misinterpretation of the results. The study was conducted in 4 Italian cities: Ferrara, Rome, Cassino and Palermo, to represent the different Italian geographical areas and knowledge, attitudes and behaviors towards screening and vaccination against HPV and reliable source of information. Data were collected in October 2010. Statistical analysis was performed with the statistical software for Windows SPSS, version 19.0. Results: The highest value of Cronbach's alpha resulted on 24 items (alpha= 0,774); the addition of other items, one at a time, decreased the value. Cronbach's alpha on all the 3 sections together resulted in a value of 0, 059. Young women generally knew that HPV can cause cervical cancer (93.3%) and genital warts (16.7%) and 76.7% of them recognized Pap-test as a screening tool. The main sources of information about HPV vaccination are represented by magazines / books (33.3%), TV (26.7%), and gynecologists (23.3%). Conclusions: This pilot study demonstrated that a short version of the questionnaire has very good reliability properties in the study and this needs to be taken into account for future studies.
- Health Policy
- Community and Home Care
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health