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  • Allgemein- und Familienmedizin

    Campus der Universität Bielefeld
    Campus der Universität Bielefeld
    Credit: Liudmila Chernetska (Stock-Photograph-ID:1414766690)

Bruna+ - Breast Cancer Aftercare for Women of Turkish Origin: Factors Influencing the Utilization

Credit: Liudmila Chernetska (Stock-Photograph-ID:1414766690)

Acronym: Bruna+

Studiendesign: This study consists of three parts: a qualitative, a quantitative and a mixed-methods (uses both qualitative and quantitative methods) part

Duration: 01.10.2023-30.09.2025

Status: Ongoing

Ethics vote: Ethics Committee of the Medical Association of Westphalia-Lippe, file number: 2023-490-f-S

Funding: German Cancer Aid (70115267); no funding from the pharmaceutical industry or medical device manufacturers

Team location Bielefeld:

  • Project management: Svetlana Puzhko, MD, PhD
  • Research assistants: Cansu Erdoğan Cengiz, M.A. Sociology; Lara Schürmann, M. Sc. Public Health

Breast cancer is the most common cancer type among women in Germany and worldwide. Studies show that an immigrant background has an impact on health status, health behavior, and the use of health services. The largest group of migrant women in Germany are women of Turkish origin. Almost half of them are between 35 and 70 years of age and therefore have an increased risk of breast cancer. There is a lack of studies on the uptake of breast cancer aftercare by women with a migrant background in Germany. The focus of this study is the utilization of breast cancer aftercare by women of Turkish origin with breast cancer who are living in Germany.

Research question:

  • How is breast cancer aftercare used and perceived by women of Turkish origin?
  • How can breast cancer aftercare be improved for this target group?

Project description:

To answer the research questions, we will conduct a study consisting of three parts:

  • Study part 1: quantitative and qualitative research methods
  • Study part 2: analysis of health insurance data
  • Study part 3: workshops, so-called deliberative-consensual consultations

In study part 1, we conduct interviews and focus groups with patients of Turkish origin in breast cancer aftercare to find out more about their use and perception of breast cancer aftercare. Based on these results, our project partners from the Bielefeld School of Public Health are designing a survey questionnaire. In study part 2, our project partners analyze routine data from a statutory health insurance company to compare the use of breast cancer aftercare services between women of Turkish origin and women of non-Turkish origin. In study part 3, we conduct workshops, so-called deliberative-consensual consultations with doctors from the fields of general medicine, gynecology and oncology. In the first workshop, the doctors exchange ideas in small groups divided by profession. In the second workshop, there will be a mixed, interprofessional discussion with one or two representative doctors per small group from phase 1. The aim of the workshops is to find out more about the doctors' views on the topics of the need for change in the aftercare process, barriers and factors that promote implementation in breast cancer aftercare for women of Turkish origin and the role of the individual medical professions in aftercare.

Based on the results of the three parts of the study, recommendations for action for breast cancer aftercare will be developed.

External project partners:

  • School of Public Health, Bielefeld University (Prof. Oliver Razum, Dr. Jürgen Breckenkamp)

Patient participation:

So far, there are no plans to involve patients in the evaluation of the study results.

Guidelines for data release:

After completion of the study, the data will be stored in the institutional repository of Bielefeld University PUB in accordance with the Bielefeld Resolutions on Open Access.

If you are interested in participating in the study or have any questions, please contact us – by email at

Keywords: breast cancer, migration background, mixed methods, secondary data analysis, interviews, focus groups, aftercare

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