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Keywords

African American men; Cancer – Prevention; Colon (Anatomy) — Cancer; Colorectal cancer; Community Health Advisors; Community health services; Community-based research; Early detection; Prostate — Cancer; Prostate cancer; Rectum — Cancer

Abstract

Prostate and colorectal cancer are two of the leading causes of cancer deaths among African American men. This study describes lessons learned from the development, implementation and evaluation of a culturally appropriate, barbershop-based intervention to improve prostate and colorectal cancer screening awareness among African American men. Working with an Advisory Panel of shop owners, barbers, and cancer survivors, local barbers were recruited and trained as Community Health Advisors to educate, motivate, and assist their clients in becoming more knowledgeable about prostate and colorectal cancer. Survey results reveal increases in prostate and colorectal cancer knowledge and self-reported screening among participants. Lessons learned include the need for adequate project staffing and the appropriate role of the barber as a Community Health Advisor. Findings from this study suggest that barbershops are a promising setting for reaching African American men and could be used to target additional conditions that disproportionately impact this community.