Table 4

Behaviours related to clinical guideline use in 1568 primary care health practitioners, China, 2016

Guideline utilisationN (%)
Frequency of guideline use (n=1568)*
Frequently177 (11.3)
Often556 (35.5)
Occasionally709 (45.2)
Never126 (8.0)
Sum1568 (100.0)
Sources of guidelines (n=1438)
Public search engines911 (63.4)
Medical websites697 (48.5)
Materials distributed by institutions575 (40.0)
Professional academic journals413 (28.7)
Chinese biomedical databases408 (28.4)
Materials distributed by companies188 (13.1)
Foreign biomedical databases69 (4.8)
Unaware of how to obtain guidelines52 (3.6)
Preferred types of guidelines (n=1420) 1
Chinese guidelines for primary care institutions1024 (72.1)
Chinese guidelines for all medical institutions1006 (70.9)
Translated foreign guidelines (Chinese versions)261 (18.4)
Original foreign guidelines (English versions)66 (4.6)
Barriers to guideline use (n=1560)
Lack of training778 (49.9)
Lack of access696 (44.6)
Lack of awareness592 (38.0)
Guidelines not updated in a timely manner559 (35.8)
Guidelines not sufficiently concise525 (33.7)
Limited practitioner knowledge480 (30.8)
Guidelines not practical for implementation at the grass-roots level477 (30.6)
Lack of oversight mechanisms to ensure medical practice fulfils the clinical recommendations329 (21.1)
Language barriers252 (16.2)
Lack of time to review guidelines227 (14.6)
Others5 (0.3)
  • *‘Frequently’ was defined as using guidelines on a daily basis. ‘Often’ was defined as using guidelines on a weekly basis. ‘Occasionally’ was defined as using guidelines on a monthly basis.