Journal of Cancer Education

, Volume 34, Issue 1, pp 111–115 | Cite as

Cancer Training for Frontline Healthcare Providers in Tanzania

  • Tara J. RickEmail author
  • Cassondra M. Deming
  • Janey R. Helland
  • Kari A. Hartwig


Cervical and breast cancer are responsible for the highest cancer-related mortality in Tanzania, although both are preventable or curable if diagnosed at an early stage. Limited knowledge of cervical cancer by clinic and dispensary level healthcare providers in Tanzania is a barrier for prevention and control strategies. The purpose of the study was to provide basic oncology training to frontline healthcare workers with a focus on cervical and breast cancer in order to increase knowledge. A 1-day cancer training symposium was conducted in Arusha, Tanzania, with 43 clinicians. Pre- and post-intervention surveys assessed cancer knowledge and confidence of clinicians in risk assessment. Sixty-nine percent of the participants reported never receiving any cervical cancer training in the past. A significant difference was found between the pre- and post-test in a majority of knowledge questions and in reported confidence recognizing signs and symptoms of breast and cervical cancer (p < 0.05). The 1-day community oncology training symposium was effective in delivering and increasing basic knowledge about cervical and breast cancers to these healthcare providers. The low level of baseline cancer knowledge among frontline medical providers in Tanzania illustrates the need for increased training around the country.


Tanzania Breast cancer Cervical cancer Knowledge Training Frontline healthcare workers 



Conception and design by Tara Rick and St. Catherine University MPAS Class of 2016. We thank the Physician Assistant Foundation for funding the project. We thank Judith Merinyo and Richard Mwakatundu for administration assistance. We thank Dr. Mark Jacobson for host institution support at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. We thank St. Catherine University faculty, Heather Bidinger and Donna DeGracia.


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Copyright information

© American Association for Cancer Education 2017
Corrected publication August/2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tara J. Rick
    • 1
    Email author
  • Cassondra M. Deming
    • 1
  • Janey R. Helland
    • 1
  • Kari A. Hartwig
    • 1
  1. 1.Masters of Physician Assistant Studies ProgramSaint Catherine UniversitySt. PaulUSA

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