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Abundance in El Salvador
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Written by Erik Van Slooten   
Friday, 27 January 2006 00:43

A portable adjusting table, some basic Spanish, and a big heart for service – these are the essentials that one must take on Life Chiropractic College West’s El Salvador Outreach Program.  Last week, these essentials proved fruitful, as thousands of people in El Salvador responded to the offer of free chiropractic care.  From the poverty stricken to the athletes to the leadership of the country, all were served with a great sense of purpose.  And so the name of chiropractic, quiropráctica, continues to grow in El Salvador.

Dr. Juan Campos, native of El Salvador and founder of this program, addressed the 17 D.C.’s and 33 senior interns at the outset of the week saying, “Begin each day by thanking God for the abundance he has given and ask that you might share in this abundance.” These words were drawn from Dr. Campos’ eighteen years of chiropractic outreach to the country, in which he has witnessed a contagious growth of quiropráctica. Abundance is certainly the best word to describe what occurred over the course of the week. There was an abundance of giving, growth, and purpose.

The structure of this program is based on relationships with various sectors of society that have developed over the years. These relationships help determine where the most pressing needs are in El Salvador and what locations can best address them. Life West’s outreach program coordinator, Dr. Shawn Dill, worked diligently with Dr. Campos to solidify a diversity of strategic sites such as the market, City Hall, the Supreme Court, and the Minister of the Economy. Most of these sites are located in San Salvador, however, the outreach effort reached outlying areas through a group based in the town of San Vicente. A total of 12 sites were in prolific operation last week, with one to two D.C.’s and two to four senior interns serving at each site.

One of the larger sites, at City Hall, had the privilege of sharing chiropractic with several individuals from El Salvador’s Olympic gymnastic team. Dr. Robert De Bonis, head D.C. of the site, shared the story with fellow students and D.C.’s on Wednesday evening during dinner time, expressing that this is yet another stride that chiropractic has made in El Salvador.  He explained, “An Olympic gymnast came in with a letter requesting care that was written by the President on her behalf.  I proceeded to see her and then invited the rest of the team to come tomorrow.  We’ll see what happens.” And it happened. The next day, a high ranking athletic director brought in several more Olympic athletes, along with his family as well. Both Dr. De Bonis and his son David, who is currently in clinic at LCCW, delivered care to these athletes to ensure optimum function of their bodies.

Inspirational stories such as this were told nightly as the outreach team relaxed over their hard-earned dinners. In fact, there were so many stories early on in the week that a separate meeting was held post-dinner to share these stories. Ultimately, the value was that the team was gaining a greater capacity to serve as these stories were shared. Hence, amidst the challenges of explosive growth in patient numbers and delivering quality care, the performance remained excellent. For example, at the public health clinic site where Drs. Dill and Campos provided upper cervical specific care, 275 patients were seen within a period of four hours, having both their pre and post scans assessed.

As mentioned earlier, the structure of this program is based on relationships, and it is exciting to consider what may result from these relationships going forward. Last February, during the last visit to El Salvador, LCCW president Dr. Gerry Clum joined Drs. Dill and Campos to meet with political leaders to discuss the development of chiropractic in the country. A week of free chiropractic care can reach thousands, but questions remain about creating sustainable mechanisms for the presence of chiropractic. On the horizon, objectives might include support from the government for chiropractic licensure, emphasis on chiropractic education, and a growing relationship with LCCW for empowerment of these objectives.

At an educational level, LCCW is already displaying its service-based commitment to the progress of quiropráctica in El Salvador by creating the Dr. Juan Campos Scholarship. One interested student, Jose Rigoberto Lopez, plans to apply for admission to LCCW. He expressed a sincere thanks to the outreach group last week, saying that he was humbled by the opportunity. As one who is resident to El Salvador and possesses a great care for his fellow countrymen, Lopez plans to make an intentional effort to provide affordable care upon his return. Empowering citizens of El Salvador such as Lopez with the gift of chiropractic is in essence, a gift that keeps on giving.

One thing is for sure – this program will continue to pour hearts of service to further quiropráctica in El Salvador. A truth that was evident last week for interns and DC’s alike was that there is great reward in serving. Indeed, there is abundance in serving. For some, it was the smiles offered by each patient. For others, it was the pleasure of giving someone something that they would not otherwise get were it not offered in complete, utter service. And yet for others, it was simply gaining perspective.

Do we have a need to do more outreach? Absolutely. That is why service is one of Life West’s facets in it’s mission statement – to give, to love and to serve. This outreach program is an outpouring of the intent of this mission. So, the question that remains then is, not whether you are going to reach out, but where and when you are going to reach out. The next El Salvador Outreach is being planned for June 2006. If you are interested in reaching out to the people of El Salvador with quiropráctica, please contact Dr. Shawn Dill at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 
Is Chiropractic for Children Merely Experimental?
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Written by David Jackson, DC   
Friday, 22 April 2005 13:36

Several DC’s in Maryland recently received notification from CareFirst BlueCross/BlueShield denying their claims for chiropractic care given to children under the age of twelve. According to the insurance company letter, “The CareFirst Medical Policy Committee considers spinal manipulation services to treat children twelve years of age and younger, for any condition, to be experimental/investigational.”

The company’s policy also states, “Spinal manipulation services for treating non-musculoskeletal disorders such as asthma, hypertension, gastrointestinal disorders, infections, fatigue, or mental and nervous conditions are considered experimental/investigational....”

One could argue that these policies should not apply to chiropractic, since we provide chiropractic adjustments, not spinal manipulation, and we correct vertebral subluxation rather than “treat” diseases. But, the fact is, these policies are being applied to chiropractors since we have not yet succeeded in proving to the insurance industry (and the rest of the world) that we are a separate and distinct profession with unique objectives and methods.

Even worse, we have little hard scientific evidence to support our assertion that chiropractic is beneficial for children—or for adults. With the exception of research on chiropractic for low back pain in adults, where is the documentation to shove under the noses of the insurance company execs that will prove to them that chiropractic is efficacious for children under twelve and that subluxation correction can have a direct, positive impact on non-musculoskeletal disorders?

One landmark study that laid the groundwork for further exploration is the research conducted by Bob Blanks, PhD, published in Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research. In this study of 2,818 chiropractic patients, initial findings were that the chiropractic care provided (in this case, by Network practitioners) “was associated with significant improvement in all indicators of health evaluated.” Based on the patients’ own evaluations of their health and wellness, they showed nearly a ten percent improvement in four wellness components: physical state, mental/emotional state, stress evaluation and life enjoyment.

Furthermore, the results were seen after only one to three months under care, and, according to the researchers, “appear to show continuing clinical improvements in the duration of care intervals studied, with no indication of a maximum clinical benefit.”

The bottom line interpretation of the study is that people’s general health and wellness improve with chiropractic, and continue to improve as long as they continue that care.

But, that original study is merely a starting point for the research we need to provide to get chiropractic out of the “experimental/investigational” category.  We need to compare the health of patients “before and after” receiving chiropractic, using both objective clinical tests and subjective self-evaluation tools. These patients must represent the widest possible sampling of the population, including children as well as adults and asymptomatic patients and those with specific health issues.

The doctors whose claims were rejected by BlueCross/BlueShield know firsthand the direct impact that research can have on their practice. It seems reasonable to assume that other doctors around the country will be receiving similar letters soon as other insurance companies realize that they can reduce claims costs significantly by following CareFirst’s example.

What will happen to your practice if insurance coverage is denied for ALL children under twelve or ALL patients who are coming to you for non-musculoskeletal problems?  You could, of course, switch to a cash-only practice. But, if history has taught us anything, it’s that any successful anti-chiropractic campaign usually spreads far beyond its original scope. It’s not hard to imagine a time when the medical profession will attempt to make it illegal for chiropractors to provide that kind of “experimental/investigational” care, at least not without medical supervision. Will we have to display a “warning” sign in our office, like a cigarette pack with its “this product may be hazardous to your health” label?

Dr. Jackson is chief executive officer of Research and Clinical Science (RCS), a private sector research program exploring issues of subluxation correction and chiropractic care as they relate to health and wellness. Previously, he served as president of the Chiropractic Leadership Alliance and Creating Wellness Alliance and was owner/operator of several private practice offices in California and Idaho that specialized in high volume, family wellness based care. To learn more or to sign up as an RCS Authorized Research Site, call 800-909-1354, 480-303-1694, or visit the Doctors-Only section of the RCS website at www.rcsprogram.com. Log in with username rcsdoctor and password rcsdoctor.

 
What Are You Treating?
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Written by Dr. James P. Cima, D.C.   
Friday, 22 April 2005 13:32

You might be doing a disservice to your patient

If you, as a doctor, only treat subluxation and do not address the cause of that subluxation you are doing a disservice to your patient and we will never become the primary health profession we are capable of becoming in our country. Now, I know I am going to ruffle some feathers with that remark, but doesn't your patient deserve better? How about your family? How about your colleagues?

If you had an oil leak in your car and your mechanic kept on replenishing the oil and told you to come back three times per week, without fixing the cause for the leak, would you not look for another mechanic? Why not another chiropractor?

Isn't it ironic that we state that the cause of all disease comes from subluxation (which, by the way, I also agree with) but, yet, we do not treat the root cause of the subluxation to rid our body of the disease! Could your imagine the myriad health conditions we could successfully treat if we treated the cause of subluxation? If we could develop this type of purpose and program for our profession, we would no longer need practice management programs to build our practice. Patients would be lining up and down the street to see us. The overall health of our nation would dramatically improve, reducing health care costs and human suffering beyond belief.

If we do not start addressing the cause of subluxation, then someone else will and it will be at the expense of our profession, as we lose another patient and all the referrals of this patient to a nutritionist, acupuncturist, herbalist, massage therapist, physical therapist/trainer, etc.

Now, I  know that a lost of doctors out there just want to deal with subluxations because, after all, the primary job of a chiropractor is to remove subluxation. But, is it? Even our founder D.D. Palmer said it best in The Science, Art and Philosophy of Chiropractic, when he stated, "The determining causes of all disease are traumatism (physical), poison (chemical) and autosuggestion (mental/emotional)." So why are we just dealing with subluxation?

Or to quote Thomas Edison, "The Doctor of the Future will give no medication, but will interest his patient in diet, the care of the human frame and the cause and prevention of disease." Do we not want to be "Doctors of the Future", improving the health of our nation?

Better yet, look at the Triune of Health, which states that all disease either comes from a chemical, physical, or mental (emotional) cause or a combination of the aforementioned.

So the choice is ours as a profession. Are we going to focus on the subluxation or include the cause of the subluxation and the necessary treatment protocol as well? Or should we allow these other disciplines to chip away at our profession by treating the very cause of what we treat?

I say that we develop a change in attitude, a refinement of our philosophy, embrace the cause of subluxation and develop treatment protocols within our profession to treat the cause of subluxation. Since the cause of subluxation can be:

  • Chemical, we should develop individualized nutritional programs to help our patients with their dietary needs and supplements.
  • Physical, we should institute additional treatment and exercise programs that will increase strength, stability, flexibility, balance and stamina to the musculoskeletal system and devise an individual exercise program addressing the specific physical needs of that patient.
  • Mental/Emotional, we should create educational programs that teach our patients the effects of stress on their bodies and what they can do to avoid them.

Creating a protocol to treat the cause of subluxation will be an ongoing segment and aim in this column where we explore the many protocols that address the chemical, physical and mental/emotional aspects of the cause of subluxation.

For more information on Dr. Cima and the many books he has written, you may visit his website at www.cimasystem.com.

 
A Primal Perception Approach
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Written by Robert "Rick" Wiegand, DC   
Tuesday, 15 March 2005 03:02

Going beyond the Five Senses

Most health practitioners admit to occasionally experiencing intuitive moments when they are able to “sense” things that normally cannot  be perceived through the standard five senses. A relatively small percentage of gifted individuals learn how to cultivate this expanded awareness sensing skill so they can access it at any time.  However, the majority of practitioners remain unable to access this innate ability, simply because they do not know that it is possible.

Heightened awareness of primal responses enables a practitioner to recognize when  their nervous system is reacting to significant forms of stimuli that are too subtle to be perceived via the standard 5 senses. During the 1980’s investigators began to examine this sensing phenomenon from a psycho-physiological point of view. The remarkable outcome of this research yielded information demonstrating that most individuals, when taught how to do so, can rapidly expand their range of awareness, at will. The Access Technique evolved out this research.

Background

It is well known that the nervous system DETECTS far more stimuli than an individual is AWARE of.

Homeostasis is as an excellent example of the nervous system’s ability to detect and respond to subtle internal stimuli outside of (conscious) awareness. Contemporary research now acknowledges that the nervous system also detects and responds to “ultra-weak” forms of external stimuli outside of awareness.

In the following example, an EEG was used to monitor a practitioner’s brainwave activity as he passed his hand over a subject’s body with no direct contact.  Figure 1 reflects general brainwave activity throughout most of the scan. Figure 2 displays a sudden change in brainwave activity that took place when the practitioner passed his hand over a specific symptomatic area on the subject’s back.

EEG Graph Courtesy of Dr. Ken Vinton EEG Graph Courtesy of Dr. Ken Vinton

It is significant to note that the practitioner was not (consciously) aware of any change in tactile sensations in his hand as it passed over the area. Similarly, the practitioner was not aware of the abrupt brain wave responses his nervous system produced each time his hand passed over the area.

Practical Application

During palpation, your nervous system typically detects a mixture of 1) “standard” (conscious) stimuli and, 2) “ultra-weak” (non-conscious) stimuli. Your nervous system responds differently to each of these two types of stimuli.

When your nervous system detects standard stimuli (via palpation), it responds by producing “hand- based” tactile sensations which you are aware of, AND subtle autonomic and central nervous system responses which you are not aware of.

Instead, the nervous system responds to ultra-weak stimuli by producing a variety of autonomic nervous system (ANS) responses and central nervous system (CNS) reactions. These responses may involve changes in brainwave activity; heart rate; muscle tone; respiration; sudomotor activity, and other “primal responses.”

Traditionally, practitioners have been taught to focus their attention (exclusively) on “hand-based” sensations/responses that are produced during palpation. This conventional approach does not take into account the subtle ANS/CNS responses that are also produced during palpation. By overlooking these primal responses, the mainstream method limits a practitioner’s access to subtler  (and often more accurate) ranges of information.

Using the Access approach, the practitioner directs his/her attention away from “hand-based” sensations and focuses it on specific ANS/CNS responses that are produced as they palpate.  In this approach, the hand is used to collect information, but the responses are experienced in the examiner’s body. Heightened awareness of ANS/CNS responses enables a practitioner to recognize when their nervous system is reacting to significant forms of stimuli that are too subtle to be perceived via the standard five senses.

In the Access Technique, practitioners are guided through a series of exercises that rapidly develop sensitivity to specific ANS/CNS responses. Once an individual gains a basic awareness of certain primal responses, they become able to sense when their nervous system is responding to important types of “ultra-weak” stimuli (i.e., stimuli that are detected outside of the “normal” range of perception). This primal sensing ability enables a practitioner to know when their nervous system is detecting subtle changes in a patient’s physiology that are imperceptible to the standard five senses.

Next, practitioners begin working with “enhancing tools.” These specialized electronic teaching tools, developed by the Access research team, assist a practitioner to sustain a heightened awareness of subtle ANS/CNS responses over long periods of time.  At this point, a practitioner is well prepared to start incorporating extended awareness skills into assessment and treatment procedures. Extended awareness skills enable a practitioner to significantly increase the specificity of most therapeutic approaches.  The Access Technique favors the use of low force adjustments and the ArthroStim® instrument by IMPAC.

Summary

In the past, only a small percentage of individuals successfully developed the ability to access subtler ranges of their own nervous system’s inherent sensitivity. Contemporary insights and modern enhancing tools now make it possible for most individuals to develop operational primal perception skills in a single weekend.

Visit www.AccessWorkshop.com for further information about the Access Technique!

 
Beware the Physician's Lien
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Written by Deborah A. Green, Esq.   
Sunday, 14 November 2004 22:45

Make sure that your state permits you to file a physician’s lien for services rendered, before you provide services.

Two Nebraska chiropractors provided services to an accident victim and then filed physician liens under Neb. Rev. Stat. § 52-401, which provides that “any...physician, nurse, or hospital performing professional services of any nature, in the treatment of, or in connection with an injury, possesses a lien upon any sum awarded as damages or settlement proceeds from the person causing the injury to the injured person.”

Although the trial court awarded the patient’s lawyer attorney’s fees, it refused to honor the physician’s liens and the chiropractors appealed. The appellate court agreed with the lower court and stated that the chiropractors were not entitled to a physician’s lien on the grounds that they were not physicians.

The court further held chiropractors were not included as a covered class under the physician lien statute because “chiropractor” is not specifically mentioned among the health professionals included in the statute. The court reasoned that if the Nebraska legislature wanted to protect chiropractors’ liens, it would have specifically done so. Nelsen v. Grzywa, No. A-99-1254, 2000 WL 1528958 (Neb. Ct. App. Oct. 17, 2000)

If you find yourself practicing in Nebraska or in some other state that does not recognize a physician’s lien with respect to chiropractic services, don’t give up. Obtain a lien agreement from the patient and the lawyer in your lien agreement. By doing so you will make the lawyer personally responsible to you by having him or her sign such a letter. You are also making the patient responsible for payment to you in the event that you are not paid your entire fee. The lawyer would also find him/herself in the uncomfortable position of having to explain this to the patient in the event that you were not fully paid.

The following is proposed language for your lien agreement:

Patient hereby gives a lien to Doctor as against all proceeds derived from the Case (whether by settlement, judgment or otherwise) to secure payment of all fees owed to Doctor by Patient (or by Attorney, if such fees arise from this Case), as of the time such proceeds are received. Patient hereby directs Attorney to honor said lien and to pay such sums as are secured thereby directly to Doctor, as soon as possible after any proceeds are received.

Patient hereby expressly recognizes that, even though this Lien has been given, Patient still remains personally responsible for all the Doctor’s fees and that payment of them must be made by him/her regardless of whether any money is received as a result of this Case.

Before Attorney distributes any money received as a result of this Case, Attorney agrees to make a written request and Doctor agrees to provide (within 30 days of Attorney’s request) a written statement of the Patient’s outstanding account balance including interest thereon.

If you have any questions with regard to the above or with respect to any other legal heath care issues, please feel free to FAX your questions to Deborah A. Green, Esq., at 954-971-3787 or call 954-971-7778 or e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . In future issues, she will be answering those questions which are of interest to the broadest audience.

Ms. Green has been a practicing attorney since 1977. She is admitted to the practice of law in the State of New York and Florida and is a member of the American Health Lawyers Association, the New York State Bar Association Health Care System Design Committee, the New York State Bar Association Health Care Providers Committee, the American Bar Association Health Law Section and the Florida Bar Health Law Section. She has formed numerous multi-discipline practices throughout the country.

DISCLAIMER

Because this column is being presented to you by an attorney, it would not be complete without a disclaimer. This column is provided subject to and governed expressly by the terms of this disclaimer. This column is provided for educational purposes only. The accuracy or timeliness of the information presented herein is not warranted. The information presented herein is not intended to be advice as to a specific fact pattern with which you may be presented.  Accordingly, please note that the information contained herein is not being presented as legal advice with respect to any matter and that no attorney-client relationship is hereby established.

 
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