Chiropractic Joins the Mainstream
From the April 4, 2002 issue of the New York Daily News comes a story
with a headline that reads, "The Conventional Alternative Once
on the fringe, chiropractic joins the medical mainstream."
The story in essence reports that chiropractic care is gaining
mainstream acceptance even in the medical community. The story
reports on several individuals who tout the benefits they have received
from chiropractic care.
One such proponent is New York-based opera singer Frederick Burchinal
who can spend entire evenings bent over in the role of a hunchback.
He expands upon his problems by saying, "They are aches and problems
that, if let alone, could escalate into other kinds of illness, in the
sinus! flu! stomach problems!" He continues, "I am much
healthier now. Sometimes I go away for two or three months, for work, and
I notice I start to feel not at peak performance. Then I have one or two
sessions with my chiropractor, and I am right back in form."
The article also hears from Dr. James Dillard, an M.D., acupuncturist,
chiropractor and head of Oxford Health Plans' alternative medicine
program. He says, "There has been a shift." For a long time, the
medical establishment "wanted chiropractic to go away."
"Now, the demand is so loud that HMOs and PPOs and other convoluted
arrangements under managed care are recognizing that they must provide
coverage." In fact, says Dillard, "States with insurance
equality [laws] actually require third-party payers not to discriminate
The article suggests that it is the patient responses that have
actually gotten the medical and insurance community to be more responsive
to chiropractic. The article also suggests that one of the reasons
is, "Chiropractors seem more caring, as a group, than many
traditional, time-pressed doctors." Additionally the article reports
that among a group of workers with back-related injuries, those who saw
chiropractors paid about a tenth as much and lost a tenth of the workdays
as those who went to medical doctors. They also reported on other
published studies from 1997
to 2001 that showed chiropractic helps tension and migraine headaches and
ear infections. In a Minnesota study, children with asthma had fewer
severe attacks after regular adjustments. The results are that 30 million
people seek some form of chiropractic care each year.
Chiropractic is even finding its way into hospital programs. John
Weeks, a complementary medicine expert who works with insurance companies
says, "These days, chiropractic is key — the backbone, in fact —
to many of the 125 hospital-based integrative medicine programs up and
running in 2001. Finding a way to successfully integrate
chiropractic" into hospital programs like Beth Israel's is
"critical" in making them work financially."