Zhonghua Yi Xue Za Zhi (Taipei). 1998 Mar; 61(3): 151-8.
Acupuncture utilization in Taiwan.
Community Medicine Research Center, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC.
BACKGROUND: The objective of this study was to examine the prevalence of acupuncture utilization in Taiwan by people over 20 years of age. METHODS: Stratified cluster sampling was used to randomly select 20 villages and neighborhoods (townships), a total of 8,280 people, from northern, central, southern and eastern Taiwan. A structured questionnaire was used to collect information during home visits. A total of 5,805 questionnaires were valid for use in the study. RESULTS: The complete rate of home visits was 70.1%; 73.2% of those interviewed recognized acupuncture as one of the common therapeutic methods used in traditional Chinese medicine, whereas only 12.4% had received acupuncture treatment. Typical interviewees who had received acupuncture treatment were generally ethnic from southern Fukien and aged from 30-39 years; 58.3% of the 716 interviewees had received acupuncture treatment from licensed practitioners, while the remainder were treated by non-licensed practitioners. CONCLUSIONS: The response rate to the questionnaire was high (70.1%). However, the percentage of people who had received acupuncture treatment was only 12.4%, while many people (73.2%) were familiar with it. Approximately 40% of those who received acupuncture treatment did so from non-licensed practitioners. This may reveal either a lack of awareness by the public or a lack of public protection of health and safety.