Chiropractic + Naturopathic Doctor

Chiropractic Summit adopts official position of ‘drug-free’ practice

Mari-Len De   

Features Leadership Profession

Close to 40 organizations and associations compromising the Chiropractic Summit, based in Arlington, Va., have adopted a unified public position on chiropractic science and practice as a drug-free approach to health care.

At a meeting of the Summit organizations in Seattle, Wash., on Nov. 7,
2013, the Summit adopted a “historic statements of agreement” which
includes the drug-free approach in chiropractic.

“The drug issue
is a non-issue because no chiropractic organization in the Summit
promotes the inclusion of prescription drug rights and all chiropractic
organizations in the Summit support the drug-free approach to health
care,” the official statement said.


“I am proud to say today that
after much time, effort and energy, the Summit partner organizations –
representing the leadership of our profession – have come to an
agreement on the long divisive issue on drugs,“ said Summit chair Dr.
Lewis J. Bazakos. “This truly was an historic meeting.”

First convened in September 2007, the Chiropractic Summit represents leadership from some 40 organizations within the profession. The Summit meets regularly to collaborate, seek solutions and support collective action to address challenges with the common goal of advancing chiropractic.

In a
statement, the International Chiropractic Association (ICA) welcomed the
Summit’s position on the issue of prescription drugs in chiropractic.

definitive and unequivocal position statement puts to rest any question
as to position of all of the credible organizations within the
chiropractic profession on the issue of drugs," said ICA president Dr.
Michael S. McLean.

"This united front will allow the world of
chiropractic to move forward with a new focus on the essentials of
chiropractic's unique approach to health and healing and stop the
divisive and wasteful efforts required to address the drug agenda of a
tiny sliver of the profession."

The ICA, a member of the Chiropractic Summit, has always advocated for
clear lines of distinction between the health-care professions and stood
for a drugless, non-surgical national definition of chiropractic. The
ICA has maintained a no-compromise policy on the issue of drugs in
chiropractic and has acted on a wide range of fronts, legislative, legal
and in the media, to preserve this unique and highly positive aspect of

“ICA has been outspoken about all professions
being obliged to qualify to perform any service at the highest standard
of education and testing. It is on this basis, for example, that ICA has
challenged the physical therapy profession's desire to expand their
scope in numerous states to include spinal manipulation, with a less
than adequate level of education. The authority to prescribe and
administer medications has traditionally been understood under the law
as the practice of medicine,” the ICA said in a statement.

unanimously adopted Summit statement has stopped any erosion of
chiropractic's positive, clear identity from the issue of drugs, and
established a firm, positive foundation on which powerful new growth for
our profession can be anchored," said Dr. McLean. "ICA is proud of its
historic position on drugs and excited that the vital center of the
profession, as represented by the Summit, has now come together with us.
It is the right thing to do for the chiropractic practitioner, patient
and for our national health-care system."

ICA has maintained that
the public is entitled to one truly drug-free system of health care and
doctors of chiropractic are fully trained and qualified to fill that
role with proven clinical and cost effectiveness.

“For more than
a century, the marketplace has sustained and supported chiropractic on
the basis of its unique, drugless approach to health and healing. This
is especially crucial at a time when our society at-large is recognizing
the alarming complexities, costs and complications of a drug-based
approach to treatment and the trend is strongly in the direction of a
minimalist approach regarding drugs, and with good reason,” the ICA

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