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Dynamic Chiropractic – January 29, 2005, Vol. 23, Issue 03

WHO Develops Guidelines on Chiropractic Education

By Editorial Staff
On Dec. 2-4, 2004, at the invitation of the World Health Organization, chiropractic leaders from around the world met with WHO officials and consultants in Milan, Italy, to discuss the final terms of a significant new document: WHO's Guidelines on Basic Training and Safety in Chiropractic. These guidelines, to be published early in 2005, will provide governments with advice on minimum standards for chiropractic education. They actively support the development of chiropractic education and practice in all countries, while explaining the depth of training required of all students.

"The new guidelines will make it clear," said World Federation of Chiropractic President Dr. Anthony Metcalfe, "that chiropractic is a distinct and independent profession. They will also make it clear that medical doctors and other health professionals in countries where the practice of chiropractic is not regulated by law, should undergo extensive training to re-qualify as chiropractors before claiming to offer chiropractic services."

In some countries, recent efforts have been made by medical groups to provide short courses of approximately 200 hours in chiropractic technique. The WHO's guidelines will indicate that a medical graduate world require a minimum of 1,800 hours, including 1,000 hours of supervised clinical training.

The WFC, which is in official relations with WHO, has worked with Dr. Xiaorui Zhang, a WHO official, on this project for the past five years. The meeting was led by Dr. Zhang, coordinator of WHO's Traditional Medicine Strategy 2002-2005. WFC representatives at the Milan meeting included Dr. Metcalfe, Dr. Ricardo Fujikawa (council member for Latin America), and Mr. David Chapman-Smith (secretary-general).

Chiropractic representatives from various other organizations and countries included Dr. Jean Moss, president of the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College and the Association of Chiropractic Colleges, Dr. Anfinn Kilvaer, past president of the European Council on Chiropractic Education, and Dr. Peter Dixon, past president of the European Chiropractors' Union.

The new guidelines will appear in English, French and Spanish. For more information, visit the WHO's Web site (www.who.int) or the WFC's Web site (www.wfc.org).

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