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Dynamic Chiropractic – November 7, 1990, Vol. 08, Issue 23

How Abuse Has Closed the Doors

By Douglas J. Markham, DC

Recently, I wrote an article for Dynamic Chiropractic referring to the opportunities presently knocking at our profession's door in regard to physical stress in the workplace. I also mentioned that I have been quite successful in approaching industry and administering my own physical stress reduction program to a large number of businesses.

The other part that I did not mention in my last article was the large number of businesses that I have failed to approach successfully. Although I don't handle rejection real well, I am still realistic enough to know that I am not going to be successful in getting in to work with every business that I approach with my chiropractic services. The thing that does upset me is when I don't even get to first base with a business or company due to a pre-existing bias against chiropractic. Something that troubles me even more is when the company's bias about chiropractic is legitimate. Many of the businesses that have not allowed me to talk to their employees about the reduction of physical stress through proper posture in the workplace are businesses who have had prior negative experiences with chiropractors. Most of these negative experiences have to do with chiropractors who have abused the workers' compensation system by overtreating injured workers. One good example of what I am talking about just took place a few months ago. I had the opportunity to meet with the risk manager of a major supermarket chain in regard to discussing the possibility of setting up a network of chiropractors to incorporate a physical stress reduction segment into their employee training program. The discussions with the risk manager were favorable, but due to a past history of workers' compensation abuse by several chiropractors, upper management voted down the idea of giving chiropractic a second chance. This was obviously a very unfortunate and disappointing scenario.

I am sure many other doctors of chiropractic have encountered similar situations. Chiropractors in the state of Oregon are experiencing mandatory treatment restrictions due to workers' compensation abuse by a small percentage of offenders.

It is very unfortunate that a minority of doctors abusing the system has to affect the majority. I obviously do not let such disappointing situations keep me from continuing to approach the workplace, but now is the time for the minority to start thinking of the majority.

The public needs the benefits of chiropractic in the workplace in a big way. The opportunities knocking at our profession's door in the 1990s are great, but unfortunately so are the challenges. We have all worked too hard to get where we are today as a profession to stand by and let doors of opportunity be closed in our faces. Remember, our success in the marketplace will be judged by our determination and ability to convince the American public and entrepreneurs that chiropractic is the major solution to their health care problems.

Your comments and inquiries may be mailed, phoned or faxed to:

Douglas J. Markham, D.C.
31225 La Baya, Suite 206
Westlake Village, California 91361
Phone: (818) 879-1138
Fax: (818) 889-7368


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