Assessment of experience and training needs in adolescent medicine: Perspectives from pediatricians

Meng Che Tsai, Yen Yin Chou, Shio Jean Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: To promote adolescent health care in Taiwan, we conducted a national questionnaire-based survey to assess experience and training needs in adolescent medicine among pediatricians in Taiwan. Materials and Methods: A 13-item questionnaire was mailed to all physicians registered in the Taiwan Pediatric Association. Perceived importance, necessity, skill, and training needs for main adolescent health issues were reported anonymously on a 5-point scale. We also analyzed their experience and competence in management of these adolescent health issues compared with management of two common pediatric diseases, respiratory tract infections and gastrointestinal disease. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, the χ2 test, paired t test, Spearman correlation, and logistic regression analysis. Results: A total of 226 questionnaires were included in the final analysis. Pediatricians' perceived competence in adolescent health problems was lower than that for common pediatric diseases. The analysis showed a positive correlation between competence and experience in medical practice. A higher likelihood of case referral was associated with lower perceived competence. Most respondents rated these adolescent issues " very important" or " important" (60-88%), whereas few of them reported being " very knowledgeable" or " knowledgeable" (11-36%). Nevertheless, most doctors were " very interested" or " interested" (44-71%) in receiving further training. Adolescent health issues related to " obesity, nutrition counseling, and eating disorders;" " growth and development during puberty and endocrine disorders;" and " mental health" were perceived to be of highest importance, whereas the medical topics " obesity, nutrition counseling, and eating disorders;" " dermatologic disorders;" and " growth and development during puberty and endocrine disorders" were considered top priorities for further training. Conclusion: Taiwanese pediatricians, perceiving suboptimal experience and competence in managing many adolescent health problems, consistently expressed strong interest in receiving further adolescent medicine training. We identified and prioritized their training needs for a wide variety of adolescent health issues. These findings are expected to help guide the development of integrative educational programs for pediatricians in Taiwan.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37-41
Number of pages5
JournalTzu Chi Medical Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Jun

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)


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