We've had a number of complaints regarding the practices and claims of several of our advertisers. Below is printed a letter from Don Woodard, D.C., representative of the kind of mail we've been getting on that subject.We sent copies of Dr. Woodard's letter to two of the advertisers in question; their responses follow his letter.
"Policing the Profession"
In the May 22, 1992 issue of "DC", your Report of Findings, "Policing the Profession" was very good. I especially liked the first paragraph when you said, "We must police ourselves because it is the right thing to do."
As I continued to read, however, an advertisement caught my eye about two DCs who individually treat over 1200 patients per week. In an 80 hour week, that would only allow four minutes per patient. And if new patients take longer than established patients, it's less time than that. But I guess this isn't as bad as the ad on page 23 that implies one doctor can see 1500 patients per week in 4 1/2 days. If they worked 24 hours per day for those 4 1/2 days, that would allow almost 4 1/2 minutes per patient. There are very few people that could work 108 hours straight without rest, which means less time would be spent with each patient.
In conclusion, it would see "the right thing to do" is for "DC" to police some of its advertisers who advocate spending so little time with a patient. However, like our congressmen in Washington, I see in the masthead of "DC" that you have exempted yourself from the rules you want others to follow in order to pad your pockets with money from the advertisers.
Yours very truly,
Don Woodard, D.C.
Wichita Falls, Texas
We are writing this letter in response to some negative comments by a few narrow-minded practitioners after reading our advertisement regarding our up-and-coming seminar. The question was posed: "Can these two doctors serve 2,500 patients per week with quality chiropractic care?
We ask them: Is quality truly a function of time? Does the doctor who spends 30 minutes with a patient give twice the quality as one who spends 15 minutes? What is this thing called quality according to Webster's Dictionary? It is a degree of excellence. In chiropractic terms, this degree of excellence is the art of locating, analyzing, and correcting vertebral subluxation.
We see no correlation between this and time. We do agree that one cannot serve 2,500 patients per week without discipline, focus, and specific procedures; and the lack of these causes wasted time and potential. Our seminars teach all of the factors and procedures required to serve this many patients.
It is our mission to serve mankind by helping our fellow chiropractors to reach their potentials and serve more. By doing this, we help bring chiropractic to more and more people. In order to serve this many people, and have them referring more and more of their friends and family, we must educate our patients and make their experience in our office a truly positive one. If every chiropractor was serving 1,200 patients per week, we would change the entire health care system. Chiropractic would, in its rightful place, be at the top of the health care delivery system.
This is a noble mission, fraught with obstacles. In the words of Albert Einstein, "Great Spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds." We don't intend to condemn or criticize; our goal is to enlighten.
We recognize that the vertebral subluxation is inimical to one's health and potential. Shouldn't quality be measured by the degree that life is turned on and health is restored? How long does it take to turn on a light switch? How much time does it actually require to perform a chiropractic adjustment? Within the split second required to perform the actual adjustment, there is a mini-micro nuclear explosion as that life force is released and healing begins. That split second that the subluxation is corrected has changed millions of lives as man's body has healed itself from almost every condition known. This is what we want from our seminars, to teach more chiropractors how to serve more people, so as to help humanity and mankind. And in the process place chiropractic care in its rightful position.
In the words of B.J. Palmer, "If a chiropractor spends 15 minutes to adjust a patient, he has wasted 14 valuable minutes of that patient's time." But then again, what did he know about chiropractic?
Raymond C. Wisniewski, D.C.
Thomas J. Insinna, D.C.
P.S: "There is a principle which is a bar against information, which is proof against all argument, and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance. That principle is condemnation before investigation."
In response to Dr. Woodard's letter of criticism of the time spent with patients in our office, allow me the opportunity to share some of my thoughts with you. Let's wake up. It's time to take action! There is an exhilarating tidal wave of change sweeping our country. The only system that has not adapted in the rapidly changing 90s is the health care system and I'm concerned about the future of chiropractic.
Today the successful chiropractors are increasingly patient driven and service oriented. Either we wake up and serve the patients with quality and quantity (high volume) with a reasonable fee or we as a profession are doomed. You will find that quality is the degree of excellence which implies superiority in some skill or achievement, and has nothing to do with time spent in an office. Welcome to the 1990s: a time of rapid, unpredictable, nerve shattering change. Fast food drive-thrus, walk-in haircuts, ATMs, economy size cares, micro-chips, faxes are here to stay, and all operate on volume and effectiveness. The big gas guzzling days are over. High fee/low volume DCs are a thing of the past. These are the DCs who should be monitored. If we the practitioners do not take charge of our future then we must surrender to the college bureaucrats who have no idea what it takes to be in the trenches. Let's take a stand now!
According to current trends, the patients' biggest complaints are time wasted waiting for the doctor. We cannot be everything to everybody. We as a profession must decide who we are and what we do. After experiencing back pain, my father, an MD, sent me to physical therapists and orthopedic surgeons. After nine years with no results, I had a chiropractic adjustment; that was all it took.
That spells quality (honest, trust, integrity, faith, love, results, effectiveness). The length of time spent in the office is long forgotten. What is remembered is that chiropractic worked. That's what counts. Wake up, adapt or perish. We are at a crossroads as a profession. We cannot go back to the 70s and 80s. HMOs, PPOs, and managed health care are her to stay. According to research, what patients want is effectiveness at a reasonable fee, a system that works. Wow! That's chiropractic. According to Bernie Seigel, MD, "If it works, that's scientific." Wake up!
There are between 30-40 million people who do not have insurance. Today in the 90s, the old way of practice is fast passing away. We live in precarious times. Change is frightening and yet we live with constant change. The outdated modes of practice will lead to obsolescence and failure. We must unlock our creative potential and move straight ahead without hesitation, be patient driven (quality, quantity at a reasonable fee) or stand in line for food stamps.
Join me in taking responsibility in choosing and following through on a course of action that will help our childrens' children Drugs, ozone depletion, burning the rain forests, pollution, toxic waste, endangered species, riots, unemployment, cancer, AIDS, and the vertebral subluxation are just the tip of the iceberg. Surely these are not solutions but symptoms of society's deeper problems. Wake up, it's time to take action! We must move into quality relationships based upon commitment, communication and cooperation: first with ourselves, where true fulfillment lies, then with our patients. Patients today demand results, not theory.
Chiropractic is based on the science of locating the vertebral subluxation complex, the art of adjusting to remove the subluxation, and the philosophy that the body has an intelligence, and is a self-healing organism. Has this anything to do with time spent with the patient? Are we based on symptoms, feeling good, high fee therapy practices or effectiveness (science, art, and philosophy)? Let us continue to serve society who has tried every therapy available; all that is needed is a chiropractic adjustment. Wow! I'm excited and I hope you are too.
Our training is designed around the Rhino Principles which form the foundation for you to take charge of your future, putting more power in your performance, maximizing your power to achieve in creating a high performance chiropractic office. Give us a call when you want to know more about these Rhino Principles. We are waiting, ready to serve you. Join me in making a commitment to the future of chiropractic. Let's search for solutions, not criticize problems, which are symptoms. Wake up, it's game time!
Mo Chih Chu, Moving Straight Ahead Without Hesitation.
Fred A. Schofield, D.C.
Schofield Chiropractic Training