Chiropractic Around the World: WFC Quarterly Country Reports

Editor's note: The following reports are reprinted with permission from the World Federation of Chiropractic's latest Quarterly World Report (December 2011). To view the complete report, visit

Cyprus: The first congress of the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East Chiropractic Federation (EMMECF), held in Limassol, Cyprus, Nov. 11-12, was very successful. It was attended by chiropractors from eight countries in the region (Bahrain, Cyprus, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates) and several European countries.

Events included a disc pathology seminar by Drs. Margaret Seron and John Hyland, generously sponsored by Foot Levelers; a presentation by the American Institute of Minimally Invasive Surgery (AIMIS), another sponsor; and the General Council Meeting of the EMMECF. Significant items arising from the council meeting included:

  • The new federation Web site,, was reviewed and approved.
  • Dr. Amy Bowzaylo of Bahrain was appointed chair of a communications committee to develop a regular newsletter for EMMECF members, important for continued growth and success in the region.
  • Dr. Abdullah Al-Harbi (Logan, 2006) of Saudi Arabia, EMMECF treasurer, agreed to lead a project to translate the WHO Guidelines on Basic Training on Safety in Chiropractic into Arabic.
  • It was agreed to hold the second EMMECF Congress in Beirut, Lebanon, June 28-30, 2012, together with the SPINE Society (, representing spine surgeons and specialists in the region.
  • The following officers were confirmed – Dr. Efstathios Papadopoulos (Cyprus), president; Dr. Mustafa Agaoglou (Turkey), 1st vice president; Dr. Samer Shebib (Syria), 2nd vice president; Dr. Reza Jafari (Iran), secretary; Dr. Abdalluh Al Harbi (Saudi Arabia), treasurer; and Dr. Amy Bowzylo (Bahrain), communications officer.

Iran: In a recent report, Dr. Hossein Sabbagh, president of the Iranian Chiropractic Association (IRCA), explains that there is now widespread acceptance of chiropractic by the public and other professions in Iran, where the practice of chiropractic is regulated and licensed by law. Doctors of chiropractic are invited and encouraged to participate in conferences organized by other medical associations, and IRCA members see increased medical referrals to their offices.

Dr. Sabbagh lectured at three medical conferences during 2011. IRCA continuing-education programs are recognized and approved by the Iranian Ministry of Health and provide CE credits not only for chiropractors, but also medical specialists (e.g., spine surgeons, neurologists, orthopedists, rheumatologists). Through Dr. Michael Hall and Parker College of Chiropractic, the IRCA has in the past year been offering a postdoctorate certification in neurology, with the most recent session held in Tehran in September 2011.

Another IRCA project this year, with sponsorship and support from the toy company LEGO, is a campaign to raise awareness regarding the importance of scoliosis screening, early diagnosis and treatment. Informative posters and brochures are available in all LEGO stores across Iran and at all IRCA member offices.

Japan: Members of the Japanese Association of Chiropractors (JAC) have donated over 200,000 yen (US$2,600) to the Red Cross in Japan and donated extensive chiropractic services since the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear power plant disaster in March 2011. The project for volunteer chiropractic services has been led Dr. Yusuke Yoshikawa, a member of the JAC board of directors, and involves about 40 JAC members. Initially, afflicted people were treated at the evacuation shelter in Yamamotocho of Miyagi. When this shelter was closed at the end of July 2011, volunteer chiropractors continued to offer care to those in temporary housing in Shirakawa of Fukushima.

Dr. Kei Takeyachi, JAC executive director, reports that many people were devastated by moving from their homes, never knowing whether they could return. "They are under severe distress from disruption of their lives and the threat from radioactive contamination and even small injuries sustained during the earthquake turn to serious musculoskeletal disorders. Many have responded very well to chiropractic care, and have had tears of gratitude after receiving treatment." This volunteer project is long-term and continuing.

This year's JAC Honor Award was presented to Dr. Phillip Ebrall, former head of the RMIT University chiropractic program, for his contribution to chiropractic education in Japan, where the Tokyo College of Chiropractic (TCC) was formerly RMIT Japan. Dr. Ebrall, who continues as an education advisor to TCC, currently holds a new appointment as professor for the chiropractic program about to start at Central Queensland University in Australia.

The JAC is currently negotiating with universities to commence the first university-based chiropractic program in Japan. This follows meetings since August with senior representatives of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) advising that a university-based program is possible and appropriate, even though there is no law to recognize and regulate chiropractic in Japan.

Norway: At the Norwegian Chiropractors' Association's Annual Convention in October 2011, Dr. Tim Lothe Raven was named Chiropractor of the Year. Receiving his award, he said that "I gladly follow in my wife's footsteps" – the winner last year was his wife, Dr. Lisa Lothe. Dr. Raven, born and raised in Australia where he graduated as a chiropractor at RMIT University in Melbourne in 1988, has practiced in Grimstad, Norway, since 2000. He holds an MSc in clinical chiropractic from AECC and the University of Portsmouth, and is completing a PhD at the University of Oslo.

He currently serves as president of the European Council on Chiropractic Education (ECCE) and his many other activities and elected offices include being the NCA's representative on the Nordic Chiropractors' Research Forum and co-author of the European Guidelines for Chiropractic Incident Reporting and Learning Systems. He is collaborating with Dr. Craig Liebenson to present a functional rehabilitation model of care to chiropractors in Europe.

Dr. Lisa Lothe, who practices with her husband in Grimstad and is a Palmer College graduate, continues in many leadership roles in Norway and Europe. For the ECU and its European Academy of Chiropractic, she is registrar and a member of a Working Group on Specialty Training. In Norway, she is coordinator for a research school for chiropractors at Stavanger University that is bringing clinicians into research at the PhD level.

Peru: The first Latin American Congress of Neuroscience and Vertebral Column Care was held in Lima, Peru, Oct. 13-15, 2011, hosted by the Peruvian Chiropractors Association (PCA) and the Latin American Federation of Chiropractic (FLAQ). Peru currently has 32 doctors of chiropractic, 21 of whom belong to the PCA. There is no law to regulate chiropractic practice, but the profession is well-established and the PCA is in negotiations to start a first chiropractic educational program in Peru.

At the congress, the main academic program was open to all health professionals because one goal of the congress was to create a wider understanding of chiropractic. Doctors of chiropractic from Peru, Argentina, Brazil and Chile were joined by medical doctors and physiotherapists from Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. Keynote speakers for one day each were Drs. Dan Murphy and Malik Slosberg, both on the faculty of Life Chiropractic College West. A Saturday Gonstead workshop for chiropractors only was given by Dr. Ricardo Fujikawa, head of chiropractic studies at RCU Maria Cristina in Madrid, Spain.

FLAQ held an Assembly of Members on Saturday evening, and members left Peru with confidence that the PCA is well-organized and growing, and that the chiropractic profession has a bright future in the country.

South Africa: In the first week of November 2011, the Classifications, Terminologies and Standards Unit of the World Health Organization, which is responsible for WHO's International Classification of Diseases (ICD) and other classifications, and which is where chiropractor Dr. Molly Meri Robinson Nicol is a senior technical officer, held its annual Network Meeting in Cape Town, South Africa. The several hundred delegates in attendance represented WHO's collaborating centers for international classifications throughout the world. Host collaborating center was the Medical Research Council of South Africa.

Dr. Kendrah Da Silva, past president of the Chiropractic Association of South Africa (CASA), was on the MRC Organizing Committee for the meeting and attended as one of its delegates. Dr. Da Silva, who practices in Johannesburg, has a strong background in coding, has been CASA's expert in this field during the past decade, and serves on a WFC committee chaired by Dr. Kopansky-Giles of Canada that is providing chiropractic input into current revisions of the ICD.

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