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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 183643, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/183643
Research Article

Medical Practices and Attitudes of Dual-Licensed Medical Doctors in Korea

1School of Korean Medicine, Pusan National University , Yangsan-si, Gyungnam, Republic of Korea
2Korean Medicine Policy Research Center, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon 305-811, Republic of Korea

Received 8 October 2012; Revised 4 January 2013; Accepted 8 January 2013

Academic Editor: R. Govindarajan

Copyright © 2013 Jiseon Ryu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Unique dual medical system in Korea has resulted in the emergence of dual-licensed medical doctors (DLMDs) who have both traditional Korean medicine (KM) and Western medicine (WM) licenses. There have been few studies on DLMDs in spite of their growing number and importance within the medical system. We surveyed the current status and attitudes of DLMD to assess their role in integrative medicine. Questionnaires were administered to the members of the association of DLMD. Data from 103 DLMD were collected and statistically analyzed. 41.4% of DLMD were copracticing both WM and KM at a single clinic, preferring the WM approach for physical examinations, laboratory tests, and education for patients—and the KM approach for treatment and prescription. Musculoskeletal, gastroenterologic, and allergic diseases were considered to be effectively treated with co-practice. DLMD highly agreed on the efficiency of copractice for disease control and patients’ satisfaction. On the other hand, they regarded the lack of health insurance coverage for copractice and increased medical expenditure as major problems in providing co-practice. To expand the role of DLMD as mediators of integration in primary health care, the effectiveness of their co-practice should be evaluated and a corresponding health insurance reimbursement system should be established.