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Type: Journal article
Title: Acupuncture in Australian general practice: patient characteristics
Author: Easthope, G.
Gill, G.
Beilby, J.
Tranter, B.
Citation: Medical Journal of Australia, 1999; 170(6):259-262
Issue Date: 1999
ISSN: 0314-514X
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To ascertain the incidence of acupuncture claims and the characteristics of patients claiming for acupuncture. DESIGN: Secondary analysis of Health Insurance Commission data on claims for acupuncture performed by a medical practitioner. PARTICIPANTS: A summary of all Medicare acupuncture claims for financial years 1984-85 to 1996-97 and a random sample of patients claiming a Medicare rebate in calendar year 1996. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Claims for acupuncture by patients' State, sex, age, and the socioeconomic disadvantage index of patients' residences. RESULTS: Between 1984-85 and 1996-97 the number of acupuncture claims increased, but declined as a proportion of total Medicare claims. In 1996, 1.16% of patients claimed for acupuncture, which constituted 0.5% of all Medicare claims. Adjusting for age and socioeconomic disadvantage, women were more likely than men to claim for acupuncture (odds ratio, 1.40; 95% confidence interval, 1.36-1.45). This sex difference is proportionately greater than that for all medical services. Propensity to claim for acupuncture increased with age, peaking at 65-69 years, then declining. Acupuncture claims were more likely in areas just above those assessed as having the greatest social disadvantage. CONCLUSION: The number of acupuncture claims has increased since 1984. As a proportion of all Medicare claims, acupuncture has remained stable since declining in 1991-92. This suggests that acupuncture is now an established complementary medical practice.
Keywords: Humans; Acupuncture Therapy; Incidence; Logistic Models; Family Practice; Age Factors; Sex Factors; Adolescent; Adult; Aged; Aged, 80 and over; Middle Aged; Child; Child, Preschool; Infant; Medicare; Insurance Claim Review; United States; Australia; Female; Male
RMID: 0030006027
DOI: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.1999.tb127747.x
Appears in Collections:General Practice publications

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