Breast cancer: This is the most common type of cancer in the UK. About 1 in 8 women in the UK will be diagnosed with breast cancer during their lifetime. Breast cancer is commonly diagnosed over the age of 50 but it can also affect younger women. A little more than a half of women (61%) invited for breast cancer screening take up the invitation.
Heart diseases: More than half of people living in the UK will develop a heart disease during their life. Heart diseases kills twice as many women in the UK as breast cancer. Less than a half of women (44%) invited for health checks to diagnose risk of heart diseases take up the invitation.
People from ethnic minority and socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds have lower rates of participation in health check uptakes, for both breast cancer and heart diseases.
The role of hair and beauty salons: Hair and beauty salons are trusted community places. They have successfully promoted messages to prevent heart diseases and to improve breast cancer awareness and screening in the United States.
Our aims: Our study will explore whether hairdressers and beauty therapists in salons supported by nurses/healthcare assistants (HCAs) at local GP Practices can work together to promote breast and heart health in women in London.
OVERVIEW OF OUR STUDY
Our study will be conducted in three phases.
Phase 1: we will consult salon staff, clients, nurses and health care assistants to identify culturally appealing content for an online tool (app) and how it can be accessed by users. In this stage, we will also explore which salons and GP practices will participate in our study.
Phase 2: with support from the research team, salon staff and clients will co-design an online tool to fit their needs. We will train salon staff in the use of the online app and simple health promoting messages so they can respond to queries from clients. We will also develop a plan of action with them for the delivery of the intervention.
Phase 3: we will work with hair and beauty salons and GP Practices. We will see whether hairdressers and beauty therapists can promote the use of the online app by clients.