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Screening and Disease Prevention

Why aren’t low income women screened?

Anne Chang

Anne Chang is a 45 year old woman who is divorced and has three children. Anne previously worked as a full-time elementary school teacher but since the closure of the school in which she worked, she has only been able to obtain sporadic work as a supply teacher. Transportation to the various schools is difficult and Anne cannot afford a car.

In addition to her irregular paid employment, Anne has heavy family responsibilities. She has primary childcare responsibilities since her divorce three years ago. Her children are fifteen, ten and seven years old.

The change in Anne’s marital status as well as her employment situation has resulted in a significant decline in her income. Her former husband is chronically late with child support payments.

Anne’s interaction with the health care system has been irregular. While she ensures that her children have regular check-ups, she only occasionally visits walk-in clinics, and only when she has a specific concern. She has had a few Pap tests in the past, but doesn’t think they are necessary. In general, she is more concerned with the immediate health and needs of her family than her long term health.