METHODS: A structured questionnaire survey was conducted in 2005, in which all 50 members of the Finnish Chiropractic Union were invited to participate.
RESULTS: In all, 44 questionnaires were returned (response rate 88%). Eighty percent of the respondents were men, and 77% were aged 30 to 44 years old, most of whom graduated after 1990 with either a university-based bachelors' or masters' degree in chiropractic. Solo practice was their main practice pattern. The vast majority described their scope of practice to be based on a musculoskeletal approach, using the Diversified Technique, performing Soft Tissue Therapy and about two-thirds also used an Activator Instrument (mechanical adjusting instrument). The mean number of patient visits reported to have been seen weekly was 59 of which nine were new patients. Most practitioners found this number of patients satisfactory. At the initial consultation, 80% of respondents spent 30-45 minutes with their patients, 75% spent 20-30 minutes with "new old" patients and on subsequent visits 80% of respondents spent 15-30 minutes. Interactions with other health care professions were reasonably good and most of chiropractors intended to remain within the profession.
CONCLUSION: The Finnish chiropractic profession is relatively young. Consequently, many of the practitioners have a university-degree, which reflects recent developments in undergraduate chiropractic education. Their practice profile and the manner in which they practice appear to be fairly traditional.
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