To provide East Asian evidence to the relationship between the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) and the use of biomedicine, this article examines the institutionalization of traditional East Asian medicine (EM) in China, Korea, and Japan and how it affects the relationship between EM use and biomedicine use. It uses the 2010 East Asian Social Survey. Logistic regressions specify the statistical association between EM use and biomedical physician visits. These models show that the high institutional acceptance of EM promotes the concurrent use of EM and biomedicine. In addition, since these countries feature different ways of institutionalizing EM (unification in China, equalization in Korea, and subjugation in Japan), the concurrent use is more obvious under the Chinese and the Korean system than the Japanese system. It concludes that the CAM use can be complementary to biomedicine, depending on how CAM and biomedicine are institutionalized in medical systems.
- East Asian medicine
- comparative medical systems
- concurrent use
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health