Who seeks alternative health care? A profile of users of five modes of treatment

Author: Kelner M//Wellman B
Conference/Journal: J. Alt. Compl. Med.
Date published: 1997
Other: Volume ID: 3 , Issue ID: 2 , Pages: 127-140 , Word Count: 117

This study compared the social and health characteristics of patients of five types of practitioners. Family physicians were used as a baseline and compared to chiropractors, acupuncturists/traditional Chinese Medicine doctors, naturopaths, and Reiki practitioners. Three hundred interviews (60 from each type) were conducted in a large Canadian city between 1994 and 1995. Striking differences between family practice patients and alternative therapy patients were found. Differences also were found between the groups of alternative therapy patients. For example, Reiki patients were found to have a higher level of education and are more likely to be in professional or managerial positions than other alternative patients. The profiles indicated that users of alternative therapies should not be considered as a homogenous population.