Title of Abstract

Trust in Conventional Doctors and Openness to Complementary Alternative Medicine

Poster Number

25

Faculty Mentor

Merry Sleigh, Ph.D.; Ginger Williams, Ph.D.; sleighm@winthrop.edu; williamsv@winthrop.edu

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Interdisciplinary Studies

Faculty Mentor

Merry Sleigh, Ph.D.; Ginger Williams, Ph.D.

Abstract

We examined openness to CAM methods and trust in conventional medicine in American and non-American adults. We hypothesized that trust in conventional doctors would be higher than in alternative practitioners, that an internal health locus of control (HLOC) would predict increased trust in CAM, and that non-Americans (versus Americans) would trust alternative practitioners more. Participants (n = 164) were majority female (70%) and Caucasian (67%); however, they were recruited internationally and included adults from America, Argentina, China, and Ireland. Participants responded online to the: Multidimensional Health Locus of Control, Trust in Physician Scale, and Complementary, Alternative, and Conventional Medicine Attitudes Scale. Additionally, we randomly assigned participants to one of four vignettes that described visiting a conventional or alternative doctor for depression or back pain; we then evaluated participants’ perceptions of the experience. As we hypothesized, conventional doctors were viewed as more trustworthy and effective than alternative practitioners. We also found support for our hypothesis that non-Americans, compared to Americans, would trust alternative practitioners more because non-Americans visited alternative practitioners more frequently. Contradicting our expectations, an internal HLOC predicted more trust in conventional doctors. Perhaps this finding reflects the fact that, in an attempt to control their own healthcare, these individuals turned to the healthcare that was most readily available, which would be conventional doctors.

Additional Fields About Your Abstract

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Course Assignment

PSYC 472 - Sleigh

Other Presentations/Performances

Southeastern Psychological Association Conference, Virtual, March 2021

Type of Presentation

Poster presentation

Start Date

16-4-2021 11:30 AM

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Apr 16th, 11:30 AM

Trust in Conventional Doctors and Openness to Complementary Alternative Medicine

We examined openness to CAM methods and trust in conventional medicine in American and non-American adults. We hypothesized that trust in conventional doctors would be higher than in alternative practitioners, that an internal health locus of control (HLOC) would predict increased trust in CAM, and that non-Americans (versus Americans) would trust alternative practitioners more. Participants (n = 164) were majority female (70%) and Caucasian (67%); however, they were recruited internationally and included adults from America, Argentina, China, and Ireland. Participants responded online to the: Multidimensional Health Locus of Control, Trust in Physician Scale, and Complementary, Alternative, and Conventional Medicine Attitudes Scale. Additionally, we randomly assigned participants to one of four vignettes that described visiting a conventional or alternative doctor for depression or back pain; we then evaluated participants’ perceptions of the experience. As we hypothesized, conventional doctors were viewed as more trustworthy and effective than alternative practitioners. We also found support for our hypothesis that non-Americans, compared to Americans, would trust alternative practitioners more because non-Americans visited alternative practitioners more frequently. Contradicting our expectations, an internal HLOC predicted more trust in conventional doctors. Perhaps this finding reflects the fact that, in an attempt to control their own healthcare, these individuals turned to the healthcare that was most readily available, which would be conventional doctors.