The development of a comprehensive survey instrument to measure the knowledge, attitudes and behaviours of the general public with regard to cancer screening was the goal of this project. A thorough review of the literature was undertaken, and existing survey instruments were identified and organized according to type of cancer screening behaviour being measured; question foci (predisposing, enabling and reinforcing factors); and survey implementation protocol. A comprehensive survey instrument was developed with the intention that, if feasible, the survey of cancer screening behaviours could be implemented nationally by telephone. Separate survey instruments were developed according to sex. Focus groups were held across Canada to determine the comprehensiveness of the survey items; ease of understanding and ability to respond; feasibility with respect to possible sensitivity of some of the question items; and general implementation issues (e.g. length, sex of interviewer). This paper reports on the qualitative portion of the project. Our study supports the use of qualitative methodology for instrument development and implementation.
Screening and prevention