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Chiropractic Journal of Australia : CJA June 2012
56 Chiropractic Journal of Australia Volume 42 Number 2 June 2012 Time limited discounts Do you agree that time limited discounts such as those offered through Internet discount voucher companies is unprofessional behavior? Have you used time limited discounts in you marketing activities in the last 12 months? Do you plan on using time limited discounts in your marketing activities in the future? The Advertising Guidelines also state that a person “must not advertise time limited or special offers.”53 The use of time limited discounts was agreed or strongly agreed upon as unprofessional by the majority (61.2%) of respondents. However, 9.9% of respondents admitted to using time limited discounts within the last 12 months, and 6.5% planned to do so in the future. This again is in confict with both the guidelines in the National Code of Conduct and the National Act. Dr Title Do you agree that a chiropractor's right to the title of Dr is important? Do you agree that it is always necessary to qualify the use of the Dr title with the words Chiropractic or Chiropractor? The National Code of Conduct states, “the title of ‘Doctor/ Dr’ must only be used in a manner which clearly associates its use with the practice of chiropractic.”51 The majority (65.6%) of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that a chiropractor’s right to the Dr title was important. However, 13.9% of respondents disagreed or strongly disagreed that it was necessary to qualify the title with the terms Chiropractor or Chiropractic. To use the title ‘Dr’ without qualifying it with the term Chiropractor or Chiropractic is in violation of both the Code and the National Act. Restrictions on Spinal Manipulation The new Health Practitioner Regulation National Law restricts the practise of cervical spine manipulation to be performed only by chiropractors, osteopaths, physiotherapists and medical doctors. However, the Act does not limit who may perform manipulation of other areas of the spine and extremities. Do you agree that this is appropriate? The National Act only limits manipulation of the cervical spine to the four appropriate health professions, which include: chiropractic, osteopathy, physiotherapy, and medical practitioners.54 An overwhelming 85.1% of respondents disagreed or strongly disagreed with the appropriateness of the act not limiting who may perform manipulation of other areas of the spine and extremities. Reporting Obligations In the following situations, when would you feel obliged to report to the board: In the event you become aware that a patient experienced a serious adverse reaction to treatment? In the event that you become aware that another practitioner is delivering chiropractic care that falls below the minimum standard required in your opinion? If you were convicted of a criminal offence? If you received a formal written accusation that you had committed a criminal offence? The National Code of Conduct states, “Chiropractors have statutory requirements under the National Law to report matters to the national boards.”55 Matters include the occurrence of adverse reactions56 and risk to the welfare of patients if another chiropractor is performing poorly.57 57.1% of respondents would not report to the board if their patient suffered a serious adverse reaction to treatment, yet only 29.6% of respondents would not report another chiropractor for sub-standard care. Both situations are in violation of the Code and National Law. Criminal history also qualifes under matters that must be reported to the national boards, which includes both “charges for offences punishable by 12 months imprisonment or more,” and “convictions or fndings of guilt for offences punishable by imprisonment.”17 While 4.8% of respondents would not report to the board if they were convicted of a criminal offence, 34.7% of respondents would not report to the board if accused of a criminal offence. Again, both are in violation of the Code and the National Law. CHIROPRACTIC CODE OF CONDUCT SURVEY FITZGERALD • BURRELL • BULL
CJA March 2012
CJA September 2012