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Dynamic Chiropractic – December 6, 1991, Vol. 09, Issue 25

ACA-NET, Why Should I Get Involved?

By John Gantner, DC, DABCO
ACA-NET is a very important program that was initiated by the ACA legislative commission. It was recognized that in order for our legislative initiatives with Medicare, Federal Workers' Compensation, ERISA, and several others to be successful, we needed more than a few contacts by a paid lobbyist. Indeed, the finest and most powerful lobby in America are individual citizens writing to their congressmen and senators.

With this in mind, it was decided to establish a list of names of chiropractic patients in every congressional district of the United States. When we need the support of particular congressmen or senators, the patients in their district could be contacted by ACA with the request that they write to their legislators about the issues in question. ACA has set up a program wereby we will assemble many thousands of chiropractic patients' names in our computer at our Arlington, Virginia central headquarters.

The idea is simple. Individual chiropractors are asked to have their patients "sign up" indicating their willingness to contact their legislators on matters of importance to the chiropractic profession. All these patients' names will then be entered into our computer. When we need to influence a given congressman or senator, the chiropractic patients in his district will be sent a letter from ACA describing the issue and asking them to write to their congressman or senator. Clearly, this is the finest form of "grass roots" political motivation known. It deserves our whole-hearted support.

There are several advantages to having such a program in place. First of all, it will give ACA a way to contact these legislators from the "grass roots" of their district. Secondly, it helps the patients themselves to understand the importance of our initiatives, making them a partner in accomplishing our objectives. Thirdly, by having one's patients on this computer list it is something like having them receive a periodic communication -- a newsletter -- from ACA. This is quite impressive to most people and should not be taken lightly. Fourth, and this is a sleeper benefit, the names on this list will be available to the various states so that if they had a specific legislative initiative coming up, they could obtain such names from ACA and write to these people themselves, seeking their support in writing their state legislators.

This program has great potential. We cannot afford to let it go by. Of course, wide support is necessary to make it effective. We need millions of names in the computer to make this program work best.

You will find a copy of a ACA-NET form at the end of this article. Please copy it and set it out for your patients to sign.

When the first form is filled, set out another. Some doctors xerox both sides of the sheet and fill out both sides before sending them back.

There is another part to the ACA-NET program; getting individual doctors to write to ACA indicating their willingness to write to their congress people when the time comes. Please encourage this among your colleagues as well. I add every doctor, who sends in a patient sign-up sheet, to this list.

No political activity is more potent, or effective, than "grass roots" action. This is "grass roots" in its finest form. I solicit your wholehearted cooperation. Put a few forms out today and let's get to work making a difference in our national legislative picture.

Please get a copy of this form to a few of your area colleagues. It doesn't matter that they are ACA members or not. It does matter that everybody participate! We need lots of names.

Please do what you can to have this sign-up sheet reproduced in your state newsletter or sent along as a separate sheet. Anything you can do to secure broad participation in this program will be most appreciated.

  • ACA-NET needs the most patient sign-ups in the districts represented by the legislators appearing on this list. These individuals sit on the most important committees that deal with chiropractic matters.

1991 Committees

House Post Office and Civil Service Committee, Compensation and Employee Benefits

Chair-Ackerman, New York
Oakar, Ohio
Sawyer, Ohio
Meyers, Indiana
Morella, Maryland

House Veterans Affairs Committee, Compensation, Pension, and Insurance Committee

Chair-Applegate, Ohio
Parker, Mississippi
Evans, Illinois
Penny, Minnesota
Jones, Georgia
Geran, Texas
McEwen, Ohio
Wylle, Ohio
Bilirakias, Florida

House Ways and Means Committee, Health Sub-Committee

Chair-Stark, California
Donnelly, Massachusetts
Coine, Pennsylvania
Russo, Illinois
Levin, Michigan
Moody, Wisconsin
Cardin, Maryland
Gradison, Ohio
Chandler, Washinton
McGrath, New York
Johnson, Connecticut

House Energy and Commerce Committee, Health Sub-Committee

Chair-Waxman, California
Scheuer, New York
Studds, Massachusetts
Wyden, Oregon
Sikorski, Minnesota
Kostmayer, Pennsylvania
Bruce, Illinois
Rowland, Georgia
Collins, Illinois
Symar, Oklahoma
Hall, R., Texas
Richardson, New Mexico
Towns, New York
Bryant, Texas

House Appropriations Committee, Labor-Health and Human Services

Chair-Smith, N, Iowa
Natcher, Kentucky
Obey, Wisconsin
Royball, California
Stokes, Ohio
Early, Massachusetts
Dwyer, New Jersey
Hoyer, Maryland
Pursell, Michigan
Porter, Illinois
Young, Florida
Webber, Minnesota

Senate Finance Committee, Medicare and Long-Term Care

Chair-Rockefeller, West Virginia
Benton, Texas
Baucus, Montana
Mitchell, Maine
Pryor, Arkansas
Daschle, South Dakota
Dujremberger, Minnesota
Dole, Kansas
Packwood, Oregon
Heinz, Pennsylvania
Chafee, Rhode Island
Danforth, Missouri

Senate Appropriations Committee, Labor, Health and Human Services

Chair-Byrd, West Virginia
Hollings, South Carolina
Burdick, North Dakota
Inouye, Hawaii
Bumpers, Arkansas
Reid, Nevada
Adams, West Virginia
Spector, Pennsylvania
Hatfield, Oregon
Stevens, Arkansas
Rudman, New Hampshire
McCoure, Idaho
Cochran, Mississippi
Gramm, Tennessee


ACA-NET Congressional Contact Patient List

The U.S. Congress considers issues virtually everyday that affect the delivery of health care in this country. Increasingly, these issues impact on the manner in which chiropractic health services are available. If you feel that your congressman or senator should be aware of your opinion on these issues, you should sign up below to become an ACA-NET congressional contact.

By signing the form below, you will be periodically informed of events in Washington that affect you and your doctor of chiropractic. When these events dictate, you will be asked to contact your congressional representatives to urge their support for policies helpful to you being able to receive chiropractic care. Your participation is needed and appreciated.

  Name Address City State Zip Code Signature

Send to: John H. Gantner D.C., 1406 South Main Street, Medina, New York 14103

Dr. John Gantner is a retired 50-year practitioner who now sells Florida chiropractic practices ( He also writes a monthly newsletter regarding practice sales, along with timely clinical, practice building and other information of value to a practicing chiropractor. You can subscribe at or call 239-362-7302.

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