Primary objectives: To explore the current level of computerization in clinical practice of acupuncturists in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. Methods and procedures: A self-completed, one-page two-sided, questionnaire was sent to the sample via mail, and a second mailing was sent to those who had not replied after 14 days. The Sample consisted of 367 listed acupuncturists registered with the Chinese Medicine Council of Hong Kong in 2002. Main outcomes and results: We received 162 questionnaires from this mailed survey. After deducting those who had moved (n=37), we calculated a response rate of 49.1%. Male respondents accounted for 72.2% (n=117) of replies, and 46 respondents (28.9%) had used computer in their practices. The present analyses provide evidence that acupuncturists' current overall level of knowledge and use of computers in clinical practice is far from optimal. At best, only about 5.3% and 2.9% of acupuncturists in the study sample had computerized 5-8 clinical and 5-8 administrative functions, respectively. Conclusions: In Hong Kong primary health care systems place much emphasis on quality outcomes and cost reduction. In order to achieve these goals, apparatus that allows greater accountability represents a means by which healthcare providers and policy makers can exercise greater control over healthcare services. Thus, implementation of computer systems in clinical practice can be seen as a prominent part of this overall philosophy. The present study has systematically documented the extent of clinical computer use in HK, identified areas for improvement, as well as specific groups of acupuncturists who might benefit from targeted efforts to promote computerization in the practice.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Complementary and alternative medicine