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Dynamic Chiropractic – November 30, 2004, Vol. 22, Issue 25

Two Tales of Chiropractic in the People's Republic

China Welcomes Chiropractic Care

By Kent Messer, DC and Raymond Wiegand, DC
For Dr. Corey Rodnick, the task was a straightforward one: bring chiropractic care to the 1.3 billion people of China. But how? By starting small, and first bringing it to the 6 million people of Zigong.

Zigong, located in the Sichuan province of western China, is an industrial powerhouse. Like Chengdu, the provincial capital of Sichuan, Zigong is undergoing rapid growth and development. With its industrial facilities, salt-mining operations, agricultural enterprises, academic facilities, and a growing white-collar population, the city's four hospitals are facing an ever-increasing demand for services.

To meet that demand, Dr. Rodnick has been working through the Chinese government to put chiropractic care into the health system. "I think everyone, no matter where they live, deserves access to chiropractic care," Dr. Rodnick said. After eight years, four missions and serving as host to a group of visiting Chinese dignitaries in Michigan, Dr. Rodnick has succeeded. Zigong wants chiropractors in their hospitals, and they want them now.

The most recent mission - and the largest to date - reaffirmed the commitment to deliver quality chiropractic care to Zigong. A 26-member delegation, including 11 chiropractors, support staff and family members, traveled to Zigong during the last week of May.

On previous missions, Dr. Rodnick's core group has included fellow Michigan Chiropractic Association (MCA) member Dr. Steve Kern and Dr. Lori Ugolik of Macon, Georgia. I joined them for this trip, along with MCA members Drs. Joe Lupo, Henry Cousineau, Bill Goss, and Susan Messer. Dr. Chancellor Wayne from Missouri, and Drs. David Zamikoff and David Majercin from Florida, also accompanied us on the trip.

After the team's arrival in Beijing, we briefly toured the Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square and the Great Wall. From there, we flew on to Chengdu, where we were met by government officials, who accompanied us on the three-hour trip to Zigong.

In Zigong, the vice mayor and the heads of area hospitals and schools greeted the team with a formal reception. After a good night's sleep, we began our hard work. Team doctors worked in all four area hospitals, tackling difficult cases. Hospital administrators, staff doctors and students were on hand to observe. In the schools, team members gave lectures on spinal maintenance and provided chiropractic care. On the final day of the mission, the hospital held an academic forum, in which team doctors answered questions about the science, philosophy and art of chiropractic. Hospital administrators, the head of cardiology and other medical staff gave strong endorsements of chiropractic's efficacy.

In March 2005, Dr. Rodnick will be taking a team to Zigong. During this visit, they will be opening a full chiropractic clinic, which will be staffed by two chiropractors. These doctors will work in the hospitals for one year and receive the same compensation as hospital physicians. Dr. Steve Kern is interviewing applicants and can be reached at 810-765-9700 or by e-mail at .

Kent Messer, DC
Pigeon, Michigan


Chiropractic Travels to China

by Raymond Wiegand, DC
From April 1-17, I completed a two-week lecture tour to Beijing, Tian Jin and Jinan, China. I was invited to China by Dr. Wang NingHau, director of the department of rehabilitation at the Peking First University Hospital. This hospital is China's foremost rehabilitation center. I became acquainted with Dr. Wang NingHau last year after giving presentations at two international symposiums on spinal and scoliosis rehabilitation. She was particularly impressed with the biomechanical analysis I developed to assess spinal organization, and the way in which spinal dysfunction and injury are identified. She had heard of chiropractic, but had no idea about the science of biomechanics upon which it is based.

Although chiropractic is recognized in many countries around the world, it has not been formerly introduced to China. For the most part, chiropractic is an unknown health care profession here; however, it is easily understood and accepted because of its holistic and natural approach that healing comes from within. My lecture was approved by the Chinese Department of Education for 36 hours of continuing education. The audience included renowned orthopedic surgeons, neurologists and physical rehabilitation doctors. The lectures dealt with chiropractic history, spinal and pelvic biomechanics, gait analysis, scoliosis rehabilitation, and chiropractic adjusting techniques. David Zhang, DC, of Dallas, Texas, assisted me. Dr. Zhang was educated in China, earning a degree in Chinese Oriental medicine, and received his chiropractic degree from Parker College. He assisted by providing translation of the lectures, demonstration of chiropractic techniques and discussion of chiropractic case management. We both treated many of the doctors as well as hospital patients.

Following the lecture series, I led case-study discussion groups with medical students on spondylolithesis. The purpose was to help the Chinese students with English proficiency in medical terminology, and to provoke critical thinking in differential diagnosis and treatment.

Afterward, I traveled south to Jinan, where I presented to more than 200 medical doctors at Shandong University Hospital. Shandong University has in excess of 30,000 students in undergraduate, graduate and doctoral studies. Over the past three years, I have been meeting with various universities and colleges in China to discuss a cooperative effort to open the first chiropractic school in China. Following this lecture presentation, the president of the hospital, Dr. TangHong Jia, invited me to submit a course of 150 hours to introduce chiropractic analysis and case management. This course is a precursor to the development of a chiropractic curriculum. The hospital has also agreed to open a chiropractic clinic within the hospital.

I was very pleased with the welcome I received from the Chinese doctors and their sincere interest in chiropractic. Many of the doctors remarked that the presentations gave them a new way to look at the spine and that they wanted to learn more. The next step is to find chiropractors interested in working with Chinese doctors in a hospital environment. Any interested doctor can contact me at [editor's note: 0 is a number, not a letter], or send their curriculum vitae and syllabus if they are interested in participating in the 150-hour course. Positions are immediately available, with stays ranging from three months to a year.

I have also completed much of the groundwork in identifying potential Chinese universities that are interested in establishing a chiropractic curriculum. Now, I am looking for a chiropractic college that may be interested in being the first to establish a chiropractic university in China. Any interested college can contact me at the e-mail address above.

Raymond Wiegand, DC

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