ICSM Sets the Standard for Research Conferences

By Editorial Staff

In just two years, the International Conference on Spinal Manipulation (ICSM), presented by the Foundation for Chiropractic Education and Research (FCER), has established itself as the premier conference devoted to chiropractic education and research.

The caliber of the programs and presenters of the 1990 ICSM, held May 11-12 at the Hyatt Regency in Washington, D.C., insured its place as the leading research conference in the profession. For 2 days, 270 attendees were invited to exchange views on the compelling issues facing chiropractic and attended sessions where papers on some of the most significant research taking place today were presented.

Opening speaker, Bernie Siegel, M.D., personified the conference theme of, "Bridging the Gap Between Research and Clinical Practice." In his inspiring and insightful speech, Dr. Siegel drew on his own experience with exceptional patients, to impress conference attendees with the importance of integrating scientific research with the indomitable power of the human spirit in healing. This auspicious beginning set the tone for two days of the finest in chiropractic research.

Leading researchers considered the analysis, diagnosis, and treatment of health problems encountered by chiropractic professionals in the presentation of 73 original research papers. In two sessions concerning chiropractic field investigations, doctors presented observations derived directly from their clinical experience.

Two concurrent workshops gave attendees the opportunity to examine research issues in-depth, by meeting for four hours each over the two-day conference. "Power Reading: Locating and Analyzing Clinical Research Literature" instructed practitioners interested in finding and evaluating research literature, and "Designing Chiropractic Clinical Research" dealt with the techniques in developing a research project.

A special luncheon on Friday afternoon gave attendees the opportunity to honor two exceptional men: William M. Harris, D.C., chairman of Practice Consultants, Inc., of Roswell, Georgia and 1990 Researcher of the Year, Reed B. Phillips, D.C., M.S., Ph.D.

The vision and generosity of Dr. Harris have given the profession its first clinical research center devoted to chiropractic, the Practice Consultants' Clinical Research Center (PCCRC), at National College of Chiropractic, established through a $1.1 million restricted grant to FCER. A one-year summary of PCCRC's activities given by principal investigator, John Triano, D.C., M.A., confirmed that the research studies now in progress may well establish the center as the most comprehensive and productive clinical research program in chiropractic.

The achievements of Dr. Phillips have helped to set the standards for chiropractic research and, for this reason, he was honored as FCER's 1990 Researcher of the Year. His activities as an author, editor, and speaker, as well as an outstanding researcher, have established Dr. Phillips as one of the most respected professionals in the field of chiropractic research.

The complex issue of standards of care was examined at length in a spirited symposium addressing "Approaches to the Development of Standards of Care in Chiropractic." The impressive panel of experts who took part in this symposium were: Alan H. Adams, D.C., vice president of Chiropractic Education, Los Angeles College of Chiropractic; Daniel T. Hansen, D.C., chairman of the Chiropractic Advisory Committee, Washington State Department of Labor and Industries; Rick McMichael, D.C., chairman of the board, Ohio State Chiropractic Association; Edmonde G. Samuel, D.C., committee member, Practice Parameters of Chiropractic, Oregon Board of Chiropractic Examiners; Paul G. Shekelle, M.D., M.P.H., NIH Health Services Research Fellow at UCLA, RAND Corporation; and Herbert J. Vear, D.C., past president of Western States Chiropractic College. These authorities examined alternative methods available to the chiropractic profession in establishing standards of care and responded to probing questions posed by the audience.

The future of chiropractic research may well be formed at the nation's chiropractic colleges. The philosophies of four influential chiropractic college presidents about the role of research in their institutions' curriculum were exchanged at a debate entitled, "The Role of the Chiropractic College in Chiropractic Research: Institutional and Philosophical Issues."

This critical subject was debated by: John L. Miller, D.C., president, Palmer College of Chiropractic-West; James W. Parker, D.C., president, Parker College of Chiropractic; Sid E. Williams, D.C., president, Life Chiropractic College; and James F. Winterstein, D.C., president, National College of Chiropractic. John W. Creswell, Ph.D., profesor of Educational Administration, University of Nebraska at Lincoln, offered a summation of the varied views of the presidents and gave insights about the direction that chiropractic colleges may take in the years ahead.

For the investment of two days of time, ICSM attdendees learned about research that may change the future of their practice, and explored issues that may change the future of their profession. The 1991 ICSM is already being planned; it will be an event that no one within the profession will want to miss.

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