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AMA’s “Contain and Eliminate” Tactics Are Alive and Well

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AMA’s “Contain and Eliminate” Tactics Are Alive and Well

The Chiro.Org Blog

SOURCE:   Dynamic Chiropractic

Below you will find an exerpted article about new and devious actions by the AMA House of Delegates, copied from a recent issue of Dynamic Chiropractic, and penned by the illustrious Louis Sportelli, DC

As a modern-day doctor of chiropractic, you may think this article is born of ancient paranoia. Perhaps you’re convinced this is about AMA bashing and yesterday’s news. But just look around and you will see clear and compelling evidence that the long-standing war between the AMA and everyone else who does not come under the AMA umbrella is far from over.

The names have changed, the venue has changed, the approach has changed and the legality has changed, but the intent has remained the same: to maintain monopolistic control over the delivery of health care.

AMA Policies Continue to Discriminate

It was not that long ago – 1963, to be exact – that the AMA formed its infamous “Committee on Quackery,” whose mission was to “contain and eliminate” the chiropractic profession. Please let those two words, contain and eliminate, resonate for a moment, because 47 years later, the AMA House of Delegates, more specifically the Ophthalmology and Anesthesiology delegates, have introduced a resolution regarding scope of practice.

Specifically, they are targeting the Public Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), because it contains language deemed “troubling” based on AMA policy;

for example:

H-405.969, Definition of a Physician: “The AMA affirms that a physician is an individual who has received a ‘Doctor of Medicine’ or a ‘Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine’ degree,” and

H-160.936, Comprehensive Physical Examinations by Appropriate Practitioners, which declares that “the performance of comprehensive physical examinations to diagnose medical conditions [should be limited] to licensed MDs/DOs or those practitioners who are directly supervised by licensed MDs/DOs.”

It does not get much clearer than that. This is a declaration of war on any health practitioner who is not an MD or DO.

Unfortunately, other indicators abound that not only the AMA, but also individual state medical associations, are mobilizing their forces, or are already on the offensive.

Efforts to Limit Scope of Practice

As many of you know, the Texas Medical Board of Examiners filed an action against the Texas Chiropractic Board of Examiners alleging that the chiropractic board has no authority to authorize DCs to do manipulation under anesthesia (MUA) or needle electromyogram (EMG). If that were not bad enough, the Texas medical board also suggested that “diagnosis” can only be performed by a doctor of medicine or doctor of osteopathy.

Editorial Comment: For all of you who file HCFAs for your patients, you know that if the Diagnosis boxes (Box 21) are empty, the Company does not need to pay. Think on that. Imagine, the last 50 years of progress wiped out with the stroke of a pen. Perhaps it’s time to mobilize?

Please review the rest of article now:

AMA’s “Contain and Eliminate” Tactics Are Alive and Well

About the Author:

I was introduced to Chiro.Org in early 1996, where my friend Joe Garolis helped me learn HTML, the "mark-up language" for websites. We have been fortunate that journals like JMPT have given us permission to reproduce some early important articles in Full-Text format. Maintaining the Org website has been, and remains, my favorite hobby.


  1. Stacey Burke July 15, 2010 at 2:56 pm

    Great article.

  2. Eric Brukwinski July 18, 2010 at 11:21 am

    Anything happening at the national levels to combat this?

  3. Frank July 18, 2010 at 1:24 pm

    Hi Eric

    Yes, the ACA has been supporting the Texas association, BUT the problem is that less than 15% of DCs belong to either ACA or ICA, and their funding is so low that the AMA can just steam-roll over us.

    In 1995, when only 800 DCs attended the Centennial of Chiropractic in Washington, 8000 physical therapists were at their own APTA meeting in DC. If you were a politician, which group would catch your attention?

    More DCs must join and get active, otherwise we will continue to be marginalized.

  4. Allison Blatherton September 28, 2010 at 8:22 am

    Great post. And you’re right, it is time to mobilize. Thank you for posting.

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