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A Systematic Review of Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicine Use Amongst Ethnic Minority Populations: A Focus Upon Prevalence, Drivers, Integrative Use, Health Outcomes, Referrals and Use of Information Sources

  • Josephine C. Agu
  • Yun Hee-Jeon
  • Amie Steel
  • Jon AdamsEmail author
Review Paper

Abstract

Ethnic minority populations have been identified as high users of traditional, complementary and alternative medicine (TCAM). This paper reports the systematic review of TCAM use amongst ethnic minorities. A comprehensive literature search was conducted in Ovid, PubMed and CINAHL. Included studies were original, peer-reviewed, English language articles with the primary focus on TCAM use amongst ethnic minority populations. A total of 17 articles met the inclusion criteria and were included in the systematic review. A considerable level of TCAM use was observed amongst ethnic minority populations usually attributed to its perceived safe and natural properties. Ethnic minority populations predominantly used TCAM concurrently with conventional medicine and primary TCAM referral sources were family and friends. A substantial level of TCAM integration with conventional medicine is common practice amongst these populations and the lack of disclosure about TCAM use raises an important area for further research inquiry.

Keywords

Complementary and alternative medicine Ethnic minorities CAM use Complementary therapies 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We thank the Australian Research Council (ARC) for supporting this research, Dr Josephine Agu and Distinguished Professor Adams via an ARC Professional Future Fellowship (FT140100195).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

No potential conflict of interest was reported by the authors.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Health, Australian Research Centre in Complementary and Integrative MedicineUniversity of Technology SydneyUltimoAustralia
  2. 2.Faculty of Nursing and MidwiferyThe University of SydneyCamperdownAustralia
  3. 3.Office of ResearchEndeavour College of Natural HealthBrisbaneAustralia
  4. 4.UTSUltimoAustralia

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