Is Chiropractic At The Crossroads?
SOURCE: Chiropractic & Manual Therapies 2011 (May 21)
John W. Reggars
Suite 1/593 Whitehorse Road,
Mitcham, Victoria, Australia 3132.
School of Chiropractic and Sports Science,
Faculty of Health Sciences,
Murdoch, Western Australia, 6150
Background Chiropractic in Australia has seen many changes over the past 30 years. Some of these changes have advanced the professional status of chiropractic, improved undergraduate training and paved the way for a research culture. Unfortunately, other changes or lack of changes, have hindered the growth, public utilisation and professional standing of chiropractic in Australia. This article explores what influences have impacted on the credibility, advancement and public utilisation of chiropractic in Australia.
Discussion The 1970’s and 1980’s saw a dramatic change within the chiropractic profession in Australia. With the advent of government regulation, came government funded teaching institutions, quality research and increased public acceptance and utilisation of chiropractic services. However, since that time the profession appears to have taken a backward step, which in the author’s opinion, is directly linked to a shift by sections of the profession to the fundamentalist approach to chiropractic and the vertebral subluxation complex. The abandonment, by some groups, of a scientific and evidenced based approach to practice for one founded on ideological dogma is beginning to take its toll.
Summary The future of chiropractic in Australia is at a crossroads. For the profession to move forward it must base its future on science and not ideological dogma. The push by some for it to become a unique and all encompassing alternative system of healthcare is both misguided and irrational.
The FULL TEXT Article:
This paper is the author’s perception of the many changes which have impacted, both positively and negatively, on chiropractic and the chiropractic profession over the past 30 years. Some of those changes have advanced the professional status of chiropractic, improved undergraduate training and paved the way for a research culture. Unfortunately, other changes, or lack of changes, have adversely affected the profession’s growth, credibility and the public utilisation of chiropractic services in Australia. It would you also appear, that the crossroads confronting the profession in Australia are not unique, as there are many parallels with what has occurred or is occurring internationally.
In order to appreciate and fully comprehend what I perceive to be the crossroads currently confronting the chiropractic profession in Australia, it is necessary to reflect on where the profession has come from, and the roads it has taken to reach these crossroads.
Furthermore, this is not first time the literature has referred to chiropractic being at some sort of crossroads. Others have also opined on similar circumstances facing the profession [1-3]. These three references will be discussed in this article, in the context of the current status of chiropractic in Australia.