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Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 2004 Dec 2;124(23):3078-80.

[Should complementary therapies be offered in hospitals?].

[Article in Norwegian]

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  • 1Kreftavdelingen, Universitetssykehuset Nord-Norge, 9038 Tromsø.



This study compares attitudes among oncology professionals to whether complementary therapies should be offered in integrated units affiliated with departments of oncology.


In June 2002 a questionnaire on alternative and complementary medicine was distributed among 156 physicians, 414 nurses, 164 radiation therapists and 94 administrative staff members in the five Norwegian university hospitals responsible for cancer treatment. 61% returned the questionnaire.


More than half of the physicians (56%) and most of the other health care workers (85-93%) had a positive attitude to departments of integrative medicine. If the service was provided, about half of the physicians expressed the opinion that the cost of treatment should be covered by the patient. By contrast, more than 80% of nurses, clerks and therapeutic radiographers answered that the cost had to be covered by public funding. Most oncology professionals, including the physicians, felt that the decision on the type of treatment to be offered to patients should be made in collaboration between patients, complementary therapists and oncology health care workers. However, one third of the physicians thought that treatment decisions had to be made by health care workers only.


In general, this survey demonstrated a positive attitude towards integrated units offering complementary therapies, also among oncologists. However, major differences among professions were found.

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