Exploration of health status, healthcare utilization, and health service expectations among Taiwanese adolescents

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Abstract

There have been few reports about adolescent experiences with and expectations of health service utilization in an Asian societal setting. The aim of this study is to analyze the use of healthcare services in relation to health status and explore adolescents' preferences for youth-friendly service among Taiwanese high school students. A cross-sectional questionnaire-based survey was conducted on Taiwanese adolescents aged 12-18 years in 2010. We invited participants to rate their health status, report their previous healthcare service use, and rank their health service preferences. We used logistic regression analysis to investigate the association between self-rated health status and healthcare utilization and used nonparametric analysis to compare health service preferences among sociodemographic subgroups. A total of 4,907students (97.2 % response rate) returned valid questionnaires for analysis. Poor health status and chronic illness were most salient factors independently associated with frequent healthcare service use. Only 40 % of respondents reported having a regular doctor, and pediatrics (57.7 %) was the most commonly identified professional source of medical care. A great majority (86.2 %) of respondents made clinical visits with parents. For characteristics of youth-friendly clinician, the top-ranked items included competency and patience, while having helpful and friendly personnel was highlighted for clinical setting. Conclusion: Family participation is critical in healthcare for adolescents in Asian cultures. Health service use is significantly influenced by health status and chronic illness in the general health insurance system. Understanding these background influences on expectations for healthcare may help to create youth-friendly health services that are more culturally appropriate.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)187-196
Number of pages10
JournalEuropean Journal of Pediatrics
Volume173
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Jan 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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