A survey of the uptake and implementation of research evidence by South Australian acupuncturists in clinical practice: attitudes and associated predictive factors.Complement Ther Med. 2008 Aug; 16(4):199-205.CT
To examine South Australian acupuncturists' attitudes towards the use of research evidence and concurrently identify predicative factors associated with the uptake and implementation of research evidence.
Questionnaires were mailed out to the entire South Australian acupuncturist population (n=94). The population was divided into two groups, medical acupuncturists (general practitioners or other medical specialists) and non-medical acupuncturists, as previous studies have suggested that clinicians' attitudes to EBP are particular to the clinical setting.
The total response rate to the survey was 76.6% (n=72). The difference in response rates between non-medical acupuncturists (90.9%, n=60) and medical acupuncturists (42%, n=12) was significant (p<0.0001). Over half of all respondents had both prior research training and previous research experience. Both groups held positive attitudes to research utilization, the use of research information was considered to be an important component of their professional practice, although they prioritized patient care over both reading research evidence and undertaking primary research. There was no significant difference in research interest between groups. The only predicative factor that influenced research utilization was related to the non-medical acupuncturists period of time in practice; non-medical acupuncturists interest in research (rho=-0.29, p=0.036) declined as they accrued clinical experience. No predictive factors were identified for the medical acupuncturist group.
South Australian acupuncturists hold favorable views towards research utilization and consider the integration of research evidence into clinical practice as an important component of professional development. Professional associations should implement strategies which capitalize on the respondents' positive attitudes in order to ensure high quality evidence-based care for patients seeking acupuncture.