Study protocol: Yarning about HPV Vaccination: A qualitative study of factors influencing HPV vaccination among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adolescents in Australia

Lisa J. Whop, Tamara L. Butler, Julia M.L. Brotherton, Kate Anderson, Joan Cunningham, Allison Tong, Gail Garvey

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Abstract

Introduction Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women experience a higher burden of cervical cancer than non-Indigenous women in Australia. Cervical cancer is preventable partly through human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination; in Australia, this is delivered through the national school-based immunisation programme. While HPV vaccination uptake is high among Australian adolescents, there remain gaps in uptake and completion among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adolescents. This study aims to gain a comprehensive understanding of the barriers and facilitators to HPV vaccination uptake and completion among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adolescents in Queensland, Australia. 

Methods and analysis The study will be guided by an Indigenist research approach and an ecological model for health promotion. Yarning, a qualitative Indigenous research method, will be conducted in up to 10 schools. Participants will include Year 7 (12/13 years old) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adolescents; parents/caregivers; and local key informants and immunisation programme partners involved in the delivery of school-based HPV immunisation programme. Participants will be recruited through school representatives and investigator networks using purposive and snowball sampling and samples of convenience. Field notes, HPV vaccination clinic observations and sequential diagramming of the HPV vaccination process will be conducted. Thematic analysis of data will be led by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers. Synthesised sequential diagrams of the process of HPV vaccination and qualitative themes summarising key findings will be produced. 

Ethics and dissemination The Aboriginal Health and Medical Research Council of New South Wales Ethics Committee (1646/20), the Australian National University Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC, 2020/478), the HREC of the Northern Territory Department of Health and Menzies School of Health Research (19-3484) and the Townsville Hospital and Health Service HREC (HREC/QTHS/73789) have approved the study. Dissemination will occur via conferences and peer-reviewed publications. Further dissemination will be determined in partnership with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Steering Committee, including Youth Representatives and Consultation Network.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere047890
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalBMJ Open
Volume11
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021

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