December 2, 2011 — The recent controversy over the status of the Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE) before the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) showcases issues that have been at the forefront of the chiropractic profession for many years.
CCE decision-makers have embarked on a campaign against the USDE should it withdraw formal recognition of the profession’s sole accrediting agency. ICA fears that this belief is taking the focus away from what should be the needed course with CCE: significant and far-reaching reform.
CCE’s eight-page open letter circulated on Nov. 21, dismisses the criticisms and concerns with their current policies, governance structure, and standards of the profession’s accrediting agency.
In the CCE’s letter, Dr. David Wickes, CCE council chair, dismissed all concerns and criticisms as having, “mischaracterized the CCE as being unrepresentative of the profession, unresponsive to criticism and promoting an erosion of the values and practices of the chiropractic profession.” ICA strongly disagrees.
Rather than being mischaracterized, ICA believes that Wickes has itemized the exact and very legitimate concerns that a growing segment of the chiropractic profession believes with very good reason to be the case with CCE.
ICA’s detailed comments submitted to USDE in the context of the CCE application for re-recognition by that federal agency focus on the issues the CCE says don’t exist. (Click here for the full text of ICA’s submission .)
In the Sept. 16 filing, the ICA provided information that supports the belief that the CCE is in violation of 12 or more different criteria. Many of these same issues and concerns were identified as deficiencies by the Department of Education five years ago in the last re-recognition process. ICA will further raise these issues at the hearing scheduled Dec. 14, 2011 before the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI) of the USDE.
The serious compliance concerns identified by the ICA fall into several broad categories:
- Corporate governance and conflicts of interest
- Inconsistent application of current standards
- Lack of responsiveness to stakeholders
The ICA expressed concern over the nature of the governance structure, which has led to an inordinate amount of influence from one institution. This influence is manifesting itself in many decisions and behaviors, including the consideration of complaints and the new standards.
ICA takes its responsibilities to the chiropractic profession very seriously and understands how profoundly education either supports and promotes the unique science and practice of chiropractic, or can, with seemingly even subtle changes, undermine those fundamental principles on which our success in an increasingly competitive and discerning healthcare marketplace depends.
This next round with the U.S. Department of Education will, ICA hopes, be a watershed and impetus for change for reform at the CCE.
To read the full response from the ICA, click here.
Source: Internation Chiropractors Association, www.chiropractic.org