TABLE OF CONTENTS
A. HOME PAGE
TABLE OF CONTENTS
I - OUR GOALS & ABOUT U.S. CHIROPRACTIC ASSOCIATION
II - HAS THE ACA (THE AMERICAN CHIROPRACTIC ASSOCIATION) CONSPIRED TO KEEP CHIROPRACTORS
OUT OF HOSPITALS?
Why Did The ACA Refuse To Discuss
With The Joint Commission On
Accreditation Of Healthcare
Organizations (Hospitals) The Proposal
By Fred Beck, D.C. To Make Chiropractic
Care Mandatory At All Hospitals
Accredited By The Commission.
(4 Part Series)
click here for downloadable articles
DOCUMENTS HAVE BEEN MOVED TO
FILE SHARING SECTION
(HEADER ALL THE WAY TO RIGHT)
III - INVITATION BY JOINT COMMISSION TO ACA
TO DISCUSS PROPOSAL
IV - LETTER FROM ACA TO FRED BECK, D.C.
B. HOSPITAL DOCUMENTS
B. SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY EXAMS (4 PARTS)
I - Why We Should Be Performing Social Security Disability Examinations But Are Not Because Of The Efforts Of The American Chiropractic Association (ACA)
II - Documentation
C. MORE MISSED OPPORTUNITIES ... (2 PARTS)
NOW IN SPORTS...
DUE TO TRADE ASSOCIATIONS THAT ARE SUPPOSED TO BE LOOKING AFTER US
D. BECK THEORETICAL MODEL OF SUBLUXATION & BECK CORRELATIVE TECHNIQUES (8 PARTS)
A theoretical model of subluxation is presented. This model assumes that subluxtions do not occur randomly and are predictable. We will integrate many of the present chiropractic theories and techniques into a universal model. This will help the field practitioner choose from a vast array of chiropractic techniques to accomplish the same goal.
E. PHILOSOPHY GONE CRAZY &
OVERVIEW OF WHAT WE ARE ALL ABOUT- (3 PARTS)
Q & A's
HELP US BE
ALL WE CAN BE
F. CONTACT US
- Mandatory Dept. Of Chiropractic
In All Accredited Hospitals
- Expand Practice Opportunities
- Expand Opportunities Into Social
Security Disability Examinations
- Expand Clinical Research To Include
Chiropractic Health Care Beyond
The Musculo-Skeletal Model
- Bring The Profession Mainstream
Without Giving Up Our Identity Or
- A Progressive Mixer Stance
That Acknowledges That The
Correction Of Spinal Subluxations
Is The Main Goal Of The
- Distinguish The Profession As
Both A Provider Of Primary
And Specialized Alternative Care
- Acknowledge That The
Chiropractor As The Patients
Physician Has The Responsibility
To Properly Diagnose The Patient
For Both A Medical And A
Chiropractic Structural Differential
Diagnosis. Physical, Orthopedic,
Laboratory, Imaging Studies Plus
Any Other Recognized Diagnostic
Testing Needed To Perform
To Arrive At An Accurate
Diagnosis Should Be
Performed By Or Ordered By
The Chiropractor (Assuming
That Such Testing Is
Medically Necessary For Arriving
At A Proper Diagnosis And
Is Allowed By State Law).
- Establishing State University Based
Doctor Of Chiropractic Degree
Programs Should Be A Goal
- A Proper Evaluation And Integration
Of Chiropractic Techniques To
Improve Patient Outcomes And
Improve Intra-Examiner Reliability
In Clinical Research Is Needed.
Beck Theoretical Model of Subluxation
and Beck Correlative Techniques are
presented for this purpose.
- Sham Treatments Utilized In
Some Chiropractic Research Must
Be Shown To Indeed Be A Placebo
And Not an Actually Treatment
- Arbitrary restrictions should not
be put on scopes of practice.
Scope of practice should be
determined by education and
training as established by
standards set by the Council
on Chiropractic Education.
- Unimpeded, direct patient access
- Parity with other physician classes
- Medicare Chiropractor payment
- We support the concepts
in the W
includes: Medicare Equality
(payment for all services allowed
by state law);
Erisa Plans; Managed Care
to put D.C.'s on a level
utilization of well trained
ethics; improved public
relations and communications
improved outside funding to
achieve this goal;
Thank you for stopping by the website for THE UNITED STATES CHIROPRACTIC ASSOCIATION. The information at this website is here to inform Chiropractors about policies of our major chiropractic trade associations that may surprise you. We try to offer solutions to problems encountered within the Chiropractic profession. If you have additional information for this site that includes documentation that can be verified, we would be happy to publish and/or respond to such information at this site. If you feel as strongly as we do that our profession has become our own worst enemy, try to get our major Chiropractic associations to do the job they are supposed to do of representing our profession as a professional trade association. If that does not work consider donating time and financial assistance to Dr. Fred Beck and the U.S. Chiropractic Association. Plans to get this organization off the ground and begin a membership drive are set for early 2009.
THE CHIROPRACTIC CRUSADER
A Roadmap To Becoming A Major Player in Healthcare
By Fred Beck, D.C.
All rights reserved
Is it time for change? Do we
need a new national organization
to represent Chiropractic?
The following copyright series of articles were submitted to Dynamic Chiropractic, MPA Media but was rejected for publication by the newspaper.
Copyright Fred Beck 2007
Summary of this series of articles:
This series of articles demonstrates that the Chiropractic profession has been mislead by the ACA (American Chiropractic Association) into thinking that they are a progressive organization that represents its members. When presented with an opportunity to gain hospital privileges at most U.S. hospitals, it is obvious that the ACA does not wish their members to gain such privileges.
THE CHIROPRACTIC CRUSADER
A ROADMAP TO BECOMING A
MAJOR PLAYER IN HEALTHCARE
BY FRED BECK, D.C.
THE QUEST FOR HOSPITAL PRIVILEGES – PART 1 OF 4
After moving back to Florida from New York in 1997, I decided to apply for hospital privileges at all the local hospitals in Broward County, Florida. Many hospitals did not respond to my request for privileges. The others all denied privileges with written replies such as: “we do not offer privileges to chiropractors at our facility”; and “we do not have any interest at the present time to establish a Chiropractic Department”. After realizing there was not one hospital in the county where a Chiropractor presently had hospital privileges and this situation was not about to change by itself, I filed a complaint with the Office of Quality Monitoring, The Joint Commission on Accreditation of (Hospitals) Healthcare Organizations, located in Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois.
Included in my complaint was the fact that Medicine has continued to maintain a monopoly at hospitals even after the AMA was found guilty of Federal Antitrust violations in the Chester Wilk case. I wrote that the public is being denied clinically effective chiropractic care while being hospitalized in the United States resulting in a dramatic negative impact on the Quality of Care received. My letter stated that I felt that privileges were denied to me to preserve a medical monopoly. My letter ended with, “I demand that Chiropractors across the country, be given the opportunity to join the medical staffs at all hospitals across the country regulated by the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Hospitals. I also demand that hospitals that deny privileges to Chiropractors based on degree vs. medical qualifications be fined and eventually lose accreditation for noncompliance. I also request that all hospitals be fined on a daily basis for providing substandard care in regards to research that demonstrates Chiropractic manipulative care to be the treatment of choice for many specific conditions; and not providing and/or making available chiropractic manipulative therapy.” The response to my initial letter came from the Office of Quality Monitoring, which wrote, “Your concern is related to a medical staff privileging issue which is not directly related to Joint Commission standards, therefore, we are unable to pursue this matter for accreditation purposes.”
My response to the Joint Commission included the following, “The real issue has nothing to do with hospital staffing but with the issue of denying hospitalized patients the only truly effective treatment for acute back pain and many other conditions, as confirmed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (see clinical practice guidelines, AHCPR Publication No. 95-0643) and an abundance of up to date major research studies published in major recognized research journals. This is not a complaint such as that of Podiatrists v. Orthopedic Surgeons, or Ophthalmologists v. Optometrists. This complaint involves treatments that are not duplicated by any other branches of the healing arts. Treatments that have been thoroughly studied and found to be the most effective form of care in the scientific literature; in respected journals that include medical, interdisciplinary, government and chiropractic publications.” This letter worked its way up to the Vice President of Standards in the Research Division and was forwarded to the head of the Standards Interpretation Group. The Standards Interpretation Group also sent a copy of the response they had sent to me to the Joint Commissions general counsel.
The response of the Standards Interpretation Group included, “The Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) is an independent, not-for-profit organization which has developed professionally based standards and evaluates the compliance of health care organizations against these benchmarks. It is not a regulatory agency.” Their letter goes on to state what JCAHO considers essential services. They also provide a list of acute care clinical services and state that the hospital must provide at least one of these listed services. Stated in the letter, “Beyond the statements in these above quoted standards, the Joint Commission does not prescribe the precise services an accredited hospital must offer. Thank you for your interest in the activities of the Joint Commission.”
My response to JCAHO’s Department of Standards included, “Paragraph #1 says that your organization is “independent”. The member organizations listed on the bottom of your letterhead, with the exception of the American Dental Association, were all party to an antitrust suit, for anticompetitive practices against the Chiropractic profession and for utilizing their power and influence to attempt to destroy the Chiropractic profession.” I later go on to state, “No place on your letterhead do I see the American Chiropractic Association as a “member organization” ‘. The JCAHO requires that hospitals provide services in a timely manner to meet patients’ needs. I responded with, “If Chiropractors are the only profession trained to provide a service that has been shown to be the most effective and in many cases the only effective form of medical treatment, how can you say that hospitals are meeting the patients needs when hospitals refuse to allow Chiropractic doctors hospital privileges?” JCAHO had written in their response to me, “the hospital defines what constitutes timely care.” My response was, “The legal system defines what is timely care. If a hospital or doctor does not meet the standards of doctors or hospitals in the local area, and a patient is harmed by these lowered standards, the hospital will be sued.” Later I write in my response, “Utilizing circular reasoning to prove an invalid point that does not hold water is just an unproductive attempt on your part, to waste my time, and hope I give up and go away frustrated. My concerns are quite clear, and I am sure you have a grasp on my point of view and intentions.” I go on to say, “regardless of your personal beliefs, you have the obligation to review my complaints as an employee of the Joint Commission; investigate these complaints; gathering information (this means meeting with representatives of my profession that can provide you with studies and clinical information); and then acting on this information. I can provide you with contacts if you are truly serious on doing your job in the public interest.” Following this letter I received a telephone call from the general counsel to the JCAHO.
The gist of the 1999 telephone call from the JCAHO general counsel was that the Joint Commission is Chiropractics friend. That they have a great relationship with the American Chiropractic Association and with Jerome McAndrews, general counsel to the Chiropractic plaintiff’s at the Wilk trial. He made it clear that Joint Commission was found to be not guilty by the courts of any antitrust violations involving chiropractic services as defendants in the Wilk case.
In my next column concerning my complaint with the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Hospitals I will tell you how my complaint progressed. I will discuss the positive outcome resulting from my discussions with the Commission. What may shock you will be how a national Chiropractic organization responded to an invitation by The Joint Commission on Accreditation of (Hospitals) Healthcare Organizations to meet and discuss my proposals.
THE CHIROPRACTIC CRUSADER
A ROADMAP TO BECOMING A MAJOR
PLAYER IN HEALTHCARE
BY FRED BECK, D.C.
THE QUEST FOR HOSPITAL PRIVILEGES – PART 2 OF 4
In my last article I wrote that the general legal counsel of The Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) considered themselves Chiropractics friends. He stated that the JCAHO has a great relationship with the American Chiropractic Association. The general counsel also stated that they were not guilty of any antitrust violations in the Wilk case.
In response to the phone call from JCAHO’s general counsel, I wrote a letter back to the Vice President of Standards. According to the phone call I received, the Joint Commissions general counsel stated that they do not make decisions concerning staffing at hospitals, and my response was, ”Doesn’t the Commission dictate essential services that hospitals must include such as Diagnostic Radiology, Dietetics, Emergency Medicine, Nuclear Medicine, Nursing Care, Pathology, Clinical Laboratory, Pharmaceuticals, Physical Rehabilitation, Respiratory Care and Social Work?” Later on I write, “I’m offended in the way you’ve decided to handle a legitimate complaint.” In regards to JCAHO counsel’s statements that JCAHO is innocent of any past antitrust action as evidenced by the Wilk trial, I wrote, “With the abundance of non-biased, multidisciplinary, double blind clinical research reported in respected medical journals over the past ten years, demonstrating Chiropractics clinical effectiveness; I doubt that the Joint Commission would get off as lightly if such a trial were to take place today.” I continue in my letter, “Who exactly are you protecting by not making policy changes regarding Chiropractic care? You obviously are not protecting the patients, since you are denying them an essential needed service and are putting them at risk at hospitals across the country.” The JCAHO general counsel responded on June 8, 2000 to my letter.
In his letter to me, the general counsel for JCAHO wrote, “You pointed out in our discussions that the Joint Commission does require accredited hospitals to offer certain services. You are correct that the Joint Commission mandates that accredited hospitals offer or contract for those services, which historically have been viewed as definitional of what a hospital is. There are, however, many other services the Joint Commission does not require of accredited hospitals, which may be beneficial to patients. It seems clear to me it would be wrong for the Joint Commission to take it upon itself to determine what services must be offered in accredited hospitals.” If you haven’t guessed already, I responded with another letter on June 16, 2000.
In my June 16, 2000 letter I wrote, “In regards to your June 8, 2000 letter to me you mention the Wilk Chiropractic litigation in which the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Hospitals was dismissed from the antitrust action. While this was true, it does not mean that the AMA did not claim they had the support of the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Hospitals (JCAH). In fact, the AMA House of Delegates at its clinical convention in November 1966, alleged support of the JCAH on their unfounded, anti-chiropractic, antitrust, position statement (See Trever, In the Public Interest, p.123). The JCAH agreed that none of its member hospitals was either to deal professionally with chiropractors or to include chiropractors as members of their medical staffs. If any did, it would risk having its hospital accreditation withdrawn or refused. A hospital lacking such accreditation could lose all of the accompanying benefits, such as residency programs, educational programs, and insurance programs.” I went on to write, “In a letter dated January 9, 1973 from the JCAH to a hospital in New Mexico in regards to a bill that was introduced that would make Chiropractic staff privileges in hospitals mandatory, the JCAH wrote, “You are absolutely correct – the unfortunate results of this most ill-advised legislation would be that the Joint Commission would withdraw and refuse accreditation of the hospital that had chiropractors on its medical staff” I continue with, “Therefore, the JCAH was never completely innocent of charges against it, although the court did indeed dismiss the charges. The JCAH’s position on Chiropractic was never favorable or even neutral.” Later in my letter I wrote, “You write about that hospitals are mandated to offer services that are historically viewed as definitional as to what a hospital is. You must remember that development of such historical mandates occurred at a time when a conspiracy and a boycott against the profession of chiropractic were taking place. The results of that conspiracy still linger. Probably the court at the time of the Wilk trial believed that on the whole, the JCAH was unaware of a well-orchestrated conspiracy against the profession of Chiropractic. Maybe they believed the JCAH to be naïve and basically innocent in regards to the conspiracy and antitrust actions against my profession. The courts at the present time would be very hard to convince that the JCAH is not now aware of the antitrust action that took place; and the results of such a conspiracy to destroy a competitive branch of medicine.” My final argument included, “The JCAH is aware that a problem now exists in regards to hospitals denying qualified Chiropractors from joining their staffs. The JCAH by way of the Wilk trial is aware that antitrust conspiracy action against Chiropractic has existed in the past and continues today. JCAH is aware that their policy in regards to Chiropractic dates back to a period of time in which it was proven in court that an organized illegal conspiracy existed against the Chiropractic profession by the medical profession. JCAH is aware that information at the Wilk trial was presented that implicated the JCAH in the conspiracy, although the information presented at the time was not deemed sufficient by the court for a finding against the JCAH. JCAH is aware that anything short of taking affirmative action to correct the problem at the present time; will most likely be viewed by the courts as being an active participant in any illegal action against the Chiropractic profession. JCAH would have to be extremely naïve to believe they could convince a court at the present time; that they were not an active participant in such a conspiracy. The Chiropractic profession has lost hundreds of million, if not billions of dollars in revenue because of the JCAH policy of keeping Chiropractors out of U.S. hospitals, no matter what the cost. I do believe that the longer JCAH’s policy against Chiropractors continues; the harder it will be for them to defend court action against them. I also believe that if action were brought against the JCAH at the present time; monetary damages would be sought; and an out of court settlement would not be likely. I also believe that at the present time there is enough evidence to convince government regulatory organizations that JCAH along with a majority of the hospitals in the U.S. has conspired to create a medical monopoly at the hospitals and has used their power to keep Chiropractors shut-out of the system.” Following this letter I had numerous telephone conversations with JCAHO’s general counsel, Harold J. Bressler, Esq.
My telephone calls with Mr. Bressler were no longer confrontational. All calls were friendly and upbeat. It was obvious to Mr. Bressler that I strongly believed that my profession had legitimate complaints in regards to problem of obtaining hospital privileges in the United States. I made it clear that in my opinion, the only possible solution to this problem, short of a new antitrust suit against the Joint Commission, would be a Chiropractic mandate from the commission. Our talks resulted in the letter dated October 4, 2000 from Mr. Bressler (a copy of that letter is included in my next installment of this expose’).
In the next installment of this series, a copy of the letter from Mr. Bressler inviting the American Chiropractic Association to a meeting to discuss my proposals will be published here. I will discuss how the American Chiropractic Association handled the invite. What they did or didn’t do will shock you.
THE CHIROPRACTIC CRUSADER
A ROADMAP TO BECOMING A MAJOR
PLAYER IN HEALTHCARE
BY FRED BECK, D.C.
THE QUEST FOR HOSPITAL PRIVILEGES – PART 3 OF 4
In my previous two articles I spoke about my quest to open up all hospitals to Doctors of Chiropractic interested in hospital privileges. I told you how my dealings with The Joint Commission on Accreditation of (Hospitals) Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) was initially confrontational but that over time I developed a friendly professional relationship with the general counsel of this organization. In a letter from the Commission dated October 4, 2000, the American Chiropractic Association is invited to meet with them to discuss my proposals. A copy of that letter appears in section B of this website.
Please read the letter from, Mr. Bressler, JCAHO’s general counsel carefully. He writes that a meeting with our profession can be arranged to discuss my proposals. My proposal would make Chiropractic care a mandated service in hospitals that sought hospital accreditation from JCAHO. This would effectively put Chiropractors in most every hospital in the United States. Mr. Bressler states in his letter that he has no idea if leaders of the Chiropractic profession endorsed my proposal.
All paperwork was forwarded immediately to Paul Watson Lambert, Esq., general counsel to the Florida Chiropractic Association (FCA). Mr. Lambert was to discuss the situation with ACA’s legal department on how to best handle a meeting with the Joint Commission. During the next four years I must have spoken to Mr. Lambert by telephone 25-30 times. I was always told either that he was working on preparing for a meeting with JCAHO or that he had to temporarily put the project on the back-burner due to extensive legal work he needed to perform for the Florida Chiropractic Association. I guess I was naïve and gullible. There were no plans by the American Chiropractic Association to take Mr. Bressler up on his offer on a meeting to discuss my proposal of having Chiropractic care a mandated service at accredited hospitals. The reality of the situation is that our largest national chiropractic association had the opportunity to meet with top officials at JCAHO that were willing to discuss my proposal that would have guaranteed that most every hospital in the United States would have a Department of Chiropractic, and they chose not to have such a meeting. In fact, I spoke to Harold J. Bressler, Esq., general counsel of JCAHO recently, and he reported to me that neither he, nor anyone in his department, has received a single call from the American Chiropractic Association since we began our talks and correspondence back in July of 1999.
As you can already guess, I am quite upset with how I feel Paul Lambert, Esq., the legal counsel to the FCA played me and strung me along. I utilized him as my main chiropractic contact and obviously he let me down. Maybe I’m even more upset at myself for setting myself up for disappointment. It had never occurred to me that the American Chiropractic Association would pass up a golden opportunity to integrate our profession into the American health care system. My proposal if accepted would have had Chiropractors giving up nothing. We would have been able to practice within the full scope of our state licenses. I had an instant fix, and the ACA wanted no part of it. I still consider Paul Lambert as the top chiropractic legal mind in the country. That is why I utilized him as my liaison with the ACA. Please note that the ACA and FCA are separate and distinct organizations and Mr. Lambert is the legal counsel for the FCA. I think he has accomplished more for the Chiropractic profession than any other chiropractic counsel in the country. That is why I had Mr. Lambert discuss the situation with the ACA. I thought his involvement would be valuable because of his successful past in dealing with Chiropractic legal issues. Unfortunately, I no longer trust him.
So now you know the American Chiropractic Association, the largest national trade association for Chiropractors, had the golden opportunity to gain hospital privileges for Chiropractors at all U.S. hospitals accredited by the Joint Commission of Hospitals. If you are not already upset over this lack of representation by the largest national trade association that is supposed to be looking after their members best interests, wait until you hear what Garrett F. Cuneo, past Executive Vice President of the ACA wrote me in a letter dated December 1, 2004. “You also question our motives regarding hospital privileges. Since we aren’t aware of any actions that we can take in Congress to encourage hospital privileges for our doctors, we believe our role is to assure that the Joint Commission on Hospital Accreditation doesn’t impede our doctors’ ability to seek hospital privileges and that local hospitals do not arbitrarily discriminate against doctors seeking privileges. We also see our role as a resource center for doctors who seek such privileges. We have a hospital privileges kit that provides various samples of bylaws and other information that would be useful to a doctor seeking privileges. Our Hospital Privileges committee is made up of doctors who have experience in seeking privileges and are available to doctors who seek them.” Mr. Cuneo continues to write, “You are right that hospital privileges isn’t as great a priority as other areas.”
Is there a hidden agenda? Is the largest Chiropractic association in the U.S. unable to afford the cost of a phone call to the Joint Commission? The Joint Commission was willing to meet with the ACA to discuss and consider my proposal that would have expanded the role of Chiropractic in the American healthcare system. This would have opened new practice opportunities in addition to dramatically expanding our dismal 5-8% patient base. As more and more Chiropractors struggle to keep their doors open, it is comforting that the ACA appears to be quite content with the present status quo.
Well readers, what are your thoughts on this matter? Does the public deserve the opportunity to receive Chiropractic care while hospitalized? Did the ACA neglect their obligations to Chiropractors as a Chiropractic trade association by not following through with the invite from the Joint Commission on Hospitals? I do not believe that my proposal would have met with much opposition from the Chiropractic fringe organizations. To gain hospital privileges we would not have had to change our scope of practice in any way. We would have practiced within the Chiropractic scope of practice defined by each individual state law. We would not have had limitations placed on the practice of Chiropractic within the hospital setting, such as the practice restrictions set-up within the Veterans Hospital program. A patients access to Chiropractic care would not have been limited by need of a medical referral or hospital guidelines that are more narrow than existing State law, as within the Veterans Hospital system. My proposal did not mandate that individual Chiropractors would have to seek hospital privileges. If a Chiropractor were interested in hospital privileges they would apply to the hospital(s) in which they were interested. If a Chiropractor had full diagnostic authority by State law as in Florida, then the Chiropractor would retain that right within the hospital setting.
I believe that the addition of Chiropractic Departments in all hospitals could be the best public relations this profession has ever had. Our present patient base of approximately 5% of the population would increase dramatically in a very short period of time. Hospital privileges would very likely open up a very substantial amount of research money to the Chiropractic profession. I don’t see a downside here. Why did the ACA pass up such a golden opportunity? Can the organization be trusted to protect our interests in the future? We have a choice here to either try to fix what we have, that being the American Chiropractic Association, or organizing a new association that would be more responsive to their members. I personally lack any trust in our existing organization. Unfortunately, many former Chiropractic ACA members have come to similar conclusions over the years and have not renewed their memberships. Unfortunately, it may be easier to fix what we have rather than attempt to organize one more national organization.
In my final installment of this hospital series, I will discuss our options in regards to obtaining better representation from our trade organizations. Included in my article will be our options if our present trade organizations are unwilling to step up to bat for its members in gaining expanded practice opportunities.
THE CHIROPRACTIC CRUSADER
A ROADMAP TO BECOMING A MAJOR
PLAYER IN HEALTHCARE
BY FRED BECK, D.C.
THE QUEST FOR HOSPITAL PRIVILEGES – PART 4 OF 4
In my previous column I reported that back in 2000, the Joint Commission on Accreditation of (Hospitals) Healthcare Organizations invited the American Chiropractic Association to meet with them to discuss proposals by me to make Chiropractic available as a mandatory service in all hospitals accredited by the organization. I wrote that the ACA had no interest on the subject and did not even make one phone call to the Commission to discuss my proposals. When I spoke with Harold J. Bressler, Esq., last year, he had not received even one call to his office by the ACA to discuss my proposals. He was still willing to sit down with the American Chiropractic Association to discuss my proposals, but he made it clear that he wasn’t quite as motivated to follow through with my proposals as he was in 2000. The ACA’s lack of interest on the subject seemed to indicate to Mr. Bressler, that failure to obtain hospital privileges for individual Chiropractors was not a problem or concern for the American Chiropractic Association.
Although the ACA is our largest national association they do not have a substantial percentage of U.S. Chiropractors belonging to their organization. We do indeed need to increase the number of Chiropractors belonging to our national association. But I cannot advocate Chiropractors joining an organization that is unresponsive to the needs of the profession. When practice opportunities can be made available to the profession without changing our scope of practice or requiring Chiropractors to give up something, our organizations should be jumping at such an opportunity. The future goals of the ACA must be made clear. Changes within the organization must take place. The ACA has failed us on the issue of hospital privilege. The ACA has also failed us in regards to their handling of the present Social Security Disability Examination system that discriminates against Chiropractors interested in performing disability examinations. This will be discussed in the next column.
Chiropractic Physicians that you trust must be utilized by the ACA to achieve clear-cut goals. The American Chiropractic Association must answer to the profession as to why they have been reluctant on performing their duties to the profession. They must be clear as to how they will fix this situation. They need to have well thought out strategies on planning the immediate and long-term advancement of the profession. They must eliminate the bureaucratic red tape and be ready to respond to the wishes of the profession both quickly and effectively. If the ACA management is happy with the present status quo, I believe we need to organize a new national association. When, if ever, the ACA is ready and able to represent the profession, I personally will rejoin the organization and recommend that all Chiropractors should also become members. But for now I am skeptical whether the ACA even has a clue in regards to their obligations to competently represent the profession, I need to be convinced that this organization is ready for some house cleaning and can get on track and establish effective goals and strategies, and utilize competent personnel to achieve these objectives.
Unfortunately, our position with the Joint Accreditation of Hospitals from public relations standpoint is not as good as it was seven years ago. It appears to the Commission that there is a total lack of interest by the Chiropractic profession on obtaining hospital privileges, as was clearly demonstrated by the American Chiropractic Associations failure to consider or act on the Joint Accreditation of Hospitals offer to meet with them. So, how do we minimize the damage created by the ACA when they failed to respond to the offer by the Joint Commission? Each Chiropractic State Association must coordinate with their local chapters an effort for individual Chiropractors to seek hospital privileges at each and every hospital in the State. Requests for hospital privileges should be in writing and be sent by certified mail. Hospital privilege rejection letters should be sent to the State Association to be tabulated. Proofs of mailings to hospitals that did not respond to the hospital privilege request should also be forwarded to the State Association for processing. This whole process can be performed over the course of a couple of months. The State Associations then should be sending the information they have to the National Association that is representing the Chiropractic profession. The National Chiropractic organization that will receive the hospital rejection information from the States, must be an organization that can be trusted to act on behalf of the profession. They must be unwilling to give up any practice rights to obtain hospital privileges. Chiropractors must be allowed to practice in the hospital as both a primary physician and as a specialist, practicing within the scope of practice laws of their state. The Chiropractor should be treated as an equal with other physicians at the hospital and therefore services provided by the Chiropractor should not require a prescription from an M.D. The national organization that will represent the Chiropractic profession in obtaining hospital privileges must be unwilling to give up practice rights or limit the scope of practice below the State law scope of practice. If the ACA is the National Association that will represent us with the Joint Commission of Hospitals, we should give the organization our full support and if we are not presently a member, we should become a member. But, if when the time comes to meet with the Joint Commission of Hospitals, the ACA has not regained our trust to professionally represent the interests of the Chiropractic profession, a new national organization may be the only solution.
On a mildly positive note, the Florida Chiropractic Association at the FCA National Convention & Expo 2007 in Orlando, Florida at the FCA Plenary Session, Saturday morning August 18, 2007 asked two questions in their survey form that related to Chiropractic advocate activities of mine. Both were yes-no questions that required checking off a yes box or a no box. The first question was, “Are you personally interested in seeking hospital privileges?” The other question was, “Are you personally interested in serving as a ringside physician for pugilistic events?” I’ve performed as a ringside physician for the last six Silver Glove Boxing tournaments and for three Junior Olympic Boxing competitions. An offer to help Chiropractors expand their role and professional opportunities as ringside physicians was made to me by the Medical Director of USA. Boxing Association. In a future column I will discuss another golden opportunity that we appear to be passing up
My next column focuses on one of our major associations botching up a golden opportunity on obtaining Chiropractors authorization to perform disability examinations for the Social Security Administration.
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PRINTER FRIENDLY HOSPITAL
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