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Chiropractic Journal of Australia : CJA September 2012
82 Chiropractic Journal of Australia Volume 42 Number 3 September 2012 Demographic Characteristics and Perceptions of Supply and Demand of Chiropractic Services in Australia: Results from Stage 1 of the Work Force Study Survey SHARYN EATON, ROD BONELLO, GORAN ŠTRKALJ, BENJAMIN T BROWN, HILARY GREEN and PETRA L GRAHAM Sharyn Eaton, PhD Senior Lecturer Head of Department of Chiropractic Faculty of Science Macquarie University Assoc. Prof. Rod Bonello, MHA Former Lecturer, Department of Chiropractic Faculty of Science Macquarie University Goran Štrkalj, PhD Associate Professor Faculty of Science Macquarie University Benjamin T. Brown, PhD Lecturer Faculty of Science Macquarie University ABSTRACT: Objectives: The aim of this report is to describe the demographic characteristics including the age profle, gender differences, income and perceptions of supply and demand of the chiropractic profession in Australia. This workforce study (WFS) was divided into three components, Australian Chiropractors (Stage 1), their patients (Stage 2), and members of the general public (Stage 3). Methods: A web-based, 64-item, cross-sectional survey questionnaire was issued to registered chiropractors (CAA and non-CAA members) throughout Australia in 2010. At the time of the survey there were 3,892 registered chiropractors. Survey in- vitations were sent to those who were registered chiropractors, and had provided email addresses (n=1,917). Results: Demographic Characteristics: There is evidence to suggest that the profession may be becoming increasingly female over time. Income exclusively from chiropractic care included 27.9% who reported an an- nual pre-tax net income of $115,000 or less and 32.3% earned more than $115,000. Of the latter group, 12% indicated that they were earning more than $215,000. Income was not related to the hours worked per week particularly for males. Supply and Demand: When considering their home state and their local region, more chiropractors thought that there was undersupply in their state, but an adequate supply in their local region. A large proportion (40%) of the sample felt that universities in Australia were graduating the correct number of chiropractors per year, and 32% reported that too many were being produced in Australia. Very few reported that the Universities were not graduating enough chiropractors. Conclusion: This paper refects some of the fndings from Stage 1 of the three stage Workforce study, showing a profession heading towards a more even gender balance and characterised by a higher than average annual income. Future research should include the impact on supply and demand of the possibility of an increasingly female profession. In addition to this, although there is a perception that there is under-utilisation of chiropractic services in inland, rural and remote areas, the extent of which should be further explored. Information from this study will assist with strategic decision making and planning. A strategic framework for the profession should not only consider the fndings from this study but also explore other factors that may have an impact on supply and demand, for example general trends in health and aging from local and national government reports. Hilary Green, MSc Lecturer Faculty of Science Macquarie University Petra L. Graham, PhD Senior Lecturer Faculty of Science Macquarie University The Work Force Study (WFS) was funded by the Chiropractors' As- sociation of Australia National (CAAN) and Macquarie University. No other fnancial support was provided for this research. The authors did not receive any fnancial incentives for this research. No Confict of interest was declared. INDEX TERMS: (MeSH): HEALTH MANPOWER; HEALTH CARE SURVEYS; HEALTH SERVICES NEEDS AND DEMANDS; CHIROPRACTIC; AUSTRALIA (Other): WORK FORCE STUDY SURVEY. Chiropr J Aust 2012;42: 82-90.
CJA June 2012
CJA December 2012