Multidisciplinary medicine and doctors, chiropractors, and other health care providers working together instead of against each other is on the upswing according to research
We are in the midst of an integrated, multidisciplinary medicine revolution where MD slander and attacks on chiropractic, for the most part, are being cast aside in the best interests of patients. We’re increasingly seeing MDs, DCs, PTs, etc., working side by side in facilities that have broken down the walls of health care.
MD attack dogs still remain
The AMA for years waged a coordinated campaign to destroy chiropractic, “a plan of containment and elimination by the American Medical Association” that became embedded in its MD membership.
This coordinated effort and mis-education is largely aging out of the profession, but is unfortunately continued today by a handful of MDs through coordinated websites such as ScienceBasedMedicine.org and PainScience.com. In a review of the book “The Medical War Against Chiropractors,” ScienceBasedMedicine.org itself admitted, “The AMA did some very regrettable things. They used inappropriate language, referring to chiropractors as rabid dogs. They attacked chiropractors as killers without any supporting evidence. Their intent was to destroy chiropractic. They tried to conceal what they were doing. Their biggest mistake was to prohibit MDs from associating with chiropractors…The AMA distributed ‘Quack Packs’ and 10,000 copies of an anti-chiropractic book…”
The remaining modern attacks by these websites end up in publications such as Forbes, the Washington Post and Wired, and on television on CNN and Dr. Oz. The industry’s Foundation for Chiropractic Progress (F4CP) responded to all these outlets’ attacks in 2019, refuting false claims with facts.
The good news…and more good news
In 2019 we saw the U.S. government recommend opioid patients referred to DCs for pain management, and a crackdown on opioid manufacturers who recruited and encouraged some MDs to up their prescriptions to further hook consumers.
As Fortune reported last year, “In 2012, as the death toll from the nation’s opioid crisis mounted, drug companies shipped out enough of the powerful and addictive painkillers for every man, woman and child in the U.S. to have nearly a 20-day supply. The reason: doctors were prescribing — and the industry was supplying — stronger pills.”
Also introduced last year was The Chiropractic Medicare Coverage Modernization Act of 2019, which could align Medicare’s coverage of chiropractic services with other federal health care providers to provide further multidisciplinary solutions.
New poll shows changing multidisciplinary attitudes
But perhaps the best news for integrated medicine and chiropractic emerged last month when a study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine revealed that U.S. physicians were recommending CHAs (complementary health approaches) to their patients at a significantly-increased rate.
The 2012 Physician Induction Interview of the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey was used to assess whether U.S. physicians recommend CHAs to their patients, and showed that among general and family practice physicians, the top most-commonly-recommended CHA was chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation (54%).
“These findings may enable consumers, physicians, and medical schools to better understand potential differences in use of CHAs with patients,” the authors write. And surely the numbers have advanced additionally over the last eight years since the survey.
These findings may also indicate that a new generation of doctors, like their patients, are ready and willing to embrace a multidisciplinary, integrated care and wellness approach that is patient-centered. We’re 33 years removed from United States District Judge Susan Getzendanner ruling that the AMA and its co-defendants were guilty of violating the Sherman Antitrust Act and that in the ruling “the AMA decided to contain and eliminate chiropractic as a profession” and “to destroy a competitor.”
As all health care entities in 2020 deal with a difficult, ever-changing landscape, statistics show we’re moving on from turf battles to find ideal multidisciplinary solutions for patient care.
To your practice’s success,
Chiropractic Economics magazine
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