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 (March 2012). To view the complete report including all country reports, visit www.wfc.org.
Chile: Most of Chile's 45 chiropractors are members of the Chilean Corporation of Chiropractic, the WFC member association in Chile, and are graduates of a chiropractic conversion program held for Chilean kinesiologists in Chile in 2005 and 2006 by the Anglo-European College of Chiropractic, Bournemouth, U.K. One of those AECC graduates is Dr. David Lopez, who is currently director of a further conversion program for kinesiologists and others at the Central University (Universidad Central de Chile – UCENTRAL) in Santiago. This is a three-year program, and UCENTRAL lecturers include faculty from several accredited chiropractic colleges in the U.S. and Brazil.
After a history of political and professional battles in Chile against groups trying to establish chiropractic as a specialty of physiotherapy, the UCENTRAL program is finally establishing the legal basis for a Chilean chiropractic qualification and an independent health profession in Chile. Following graduation of all students from the current conversion program UCENTRAL will proceed to a full university-based undergraduate chiropractic program.
At a first graduation in April, 20 students became the first chiropractors to receive a Chilean university degree in chiropractic. The graduation ceremony coincided with the third annual Regional Educational Meeting of the Latin American Federation of Chiropractic (FLAQ), held at UCENTRAL April 18-21.
India: [Dr. Noel Patterson is renowned in his home city of Perth, western Australia, and internationally as a leading sports chiropractor during the past 30 years. Here, in an article edited and reprinted from the March 2012 issue of The Australian Chiropractor, he speaks of Hands On India, ongoing impressive chiropractic outreach work in India.]
I once again had the privilege of leading a dedicated team to work with the poor of Siliguri in northeast India late last year. The group included 20 final-year Murdoch University students, two Macquarie University graduating students, and 10 chiropractors.
Siliguri is where Mother Theresa began her work, and these people are among the poorest in India, earning less than $1 a day. We stayed at the Seva Kendra Catholic mission, which is responsible for the social structure of the area. Major problems they face each day include child trafficking, prostitution, homeless and abandoned children, the status of women, severe poverty and lack of education and health care.
Nine clinics were set up in riverbeds, slums, orphanages, convents and schools, and we travelled by jeep each day to provide treatment to these beautiful people, who often walked for days to receive care. As this is the fifth year we have worked in Siliguri, our reputation preceded us, and we often arrived at the clinics to find 100 new patients patiently waiting.
At the end of 11 days of treatment, we had seen more than 4,500 patients. It was a huge learning curve for the students, as these patients presented with very severe conditions you wouldn't see in an Australian practice.
It was only because of the brilliant group of chiropractors in my team that the students were able to treat such a huge and diverse group of patients, more importantly, witness the wonderful results that chiropractic can bring to the poor and underprivileged in such a short period of time.
Our sensational chiropractors were Stephanie Le Cos, Melissa Neave (on her second trip), Leanne Blencowe, Rachel Cairns, Shane Mezger, Gary Patterson, Brett Dellar (whose original idea as a student started Hands On India), Russell Mock and Gerry Power. Our reward came from the satisfaction we received watching the students grow in their confidence and adjusting skills. We treated thousand of children, and despite their poor circumstances, their infectious smiles would lift our spirits, even when we were physically very tired.
This year we raised more than $60,000 prior to the trip and our dream of a decent school in the slums is now a reality, with almost 80 students. The school not only has a play area and toilets (the only ones in the slums), but also electricity, so the mothers can use it at night to learn how to sew and start small businesses. All of this would not be possible without the generous support of our sponsors, friends and families who supported our fund-raising events.
The exciting news is that Macquarie University Chiropractic School will be sending its first team in September 2012. Dr. Sue Ferguson, who has been on my team twice already, has kindly offered to lead the team.
After three years it is time for me to leave the Murdoch team. Dr. Neil Brodie, who accompanied me in 2010, has kindly offered to take over the role. Chiropractors with a minimum of five years' experience who would like to be part of this amazing and life-changing project, are asked to contact Dr. Ferguson ( ). I can guarantee it will be among the greatest experiences of your life.
Israel: Leaders from the Israeli Chiropractic Society report that the chiropractic profession is now becoming well-established in Israel. This follows legislation to at last recognize and regulate the profession passed in 2010. The past several months have seen well-developed plans for a first chiropractic school in Israel. This will be in Jerusalem, in affiliation with a local university and the University of Bridgeport College of Chiropractic. ICS representatives Dr. Richard Gakner (Logan, 1998) and Dr. Nimrod Liram (AECC, 1989) visited Canada and the U.S. in January to gather support from North America.
In Tel Aviv Feb. 29 – March 2, sports chiropractors from Israel and Europe attended the first ever FICS ICSSD Post Graduate Education Module in Israel. Lecturers were Dr. Laney Nelson and Dr. Connie Hayes, respectively director and vice director of the Department of Sports Science and Rehabilitation at Logan College of Chiropractic.
Japan: Kazuyoshi Takeyachi DC, an outstanding and much-admired leader in the profession in Japan and internationally, passed away in Tokyo from bladder cancer on Feb. 22, 2012 at the age of 69. Kazu, as he was known to his many friends, graduated from the National College of Chiropractic (NCC) in 1968 and became the first chiropractor to graduate and return to Japan since the Second World War.
He was a son of Yoneo Takeyachi, the self-trained Japanese chiropractor who brought then NCC President Dr. Joseph Janse to Japan in 1965 and later founded the Japanese Chiropractic Association (JCA) and sent three sons to NCC. Dr. Takeyachi followed his father as president of the JCA, serving in that position for 19 years. He was the pioneer in bringing high standards of education and practice to Japan, leading the establishment of the RMIT University Chiropractic Unit Japan in 1995. This program, now called the Tokyo College of Chiropractic, became the first accredited chiropractic school in Asia in 2005.
Dr. Takeyachi received a WFC Honor Award in recognition of outstanding services to the chiropractic profession at the Centennial Congress in Washington D.C., in 1995, and was admitted to the Hall of Honor at NCC, now the National University of Health Sciences (NUHS), in 2006.
He never lost his passion for chiropractic and what it could mean for the people of Japan, despite his long battles with ill health including leukemia in the 1990s and bladder cancer in 2009. He continued to teach chiropractic principles, history and other subjects, and serve as an administrator at the Tokyo College of Chiropractic until he was hospitalized in January 2012.
"Dr. Takeyachi was my classmate," said NUHS President Dr. James Winterstein. "Over the years we consulted often about his desire to form a chiropractic college of true substance, something he accomplished along with his brothers. He was a true friend and an outstanding pioneer for chiropractic medicine in Japan. I miss him greatly."
Kazu is survived by his wife, Toshiko, and his sons, Drs. Yoshiaki and Yasunobu Takeyachi, both of whom are chiropractors. Dr. Yasunobu Takeyachi, writing to thank the WFC for flowers sent, reported that "several times in his last days, my father said he would be a chiropractor once more if he could repeat his life – he was a man of chiropractic, totally committed to the profession."
Spain: [Article by Dr. Ana Echevste, edited and reprinted from the March 2012 issue of the European Chiropractors' Union newsletter, BACKspace.]Only 25 years ago, a group of dedicated chiropractors working in Spain had a vision and founded the Spanish Chiropractic Association (AEQ). In the words of one of the founders, Dr. Robert Gevers: "Chiropractic is the most gratifying profession there is if practiced with generosity and a giving attitude."
For those founding fathers of chiropractic in Spain, the main objective was and has continued to be the legalization of the profession in this country. They realized there was a need to fight to defend our specific principles and our uniqueness as a health care profession.
Two of the founders, Dr. Robert Gevers and Dr. James Emch, were honored on 8 October 2011, at the special event we held to celebrate the beginnings and the achievements of those very intense 25 years. It was the perfect time to thank all the people involved in the beginning and those who have taken over more recently. As a result of all the combined effort we are now at a very special and crucial moment.
The number of members of the Spanish Chiropractic Association is growing every year and now has 187 chiropractors on board. Since it started in 1986, we have been able to open two successful schools, and at the moment, between them, they have more than 160 students!
What does this mean? That Spain and chiropractic have a great future together! As Benjamin Franklin put it: "All mankind is divided into three classes: those that are immoveable, those that are moveable, and this that move." Spain is moving, and not only that. We are moving forward. We have a vision and we want to share it with the world.
We are especially proud of our schools, the Barcelona College of Chiropractic in Barcelona and the RCU Escorial Maria Cristina, San Lorenzo de El Escorial near Madrid. Both are candidates for ECCE accreditation, and are institutions dedicated to educating students in the "three-legged chair" of chiropractic: the art, the science and the philosophy. The years of work and effort behind both schools will soon pay back: the first class will graduate this year, increasing the number of chiropractors in Spain and Europe.
We see our profession growing, respecting our own principles and standards. Mother Teresa said it well: "Do not wait for leaders, do it alone, person to person." It is up to us. Action is the key. Whatever you want, whatever you see that should be fixed, just act and fix it. Join in actively with your association or do what you think should be done. That is what we are doing in Spain, with the main goal of obtaining legislation to recognize chiropractic as a primary health care profession in the health care system.
Every day we are getting closer to obtaining the recognition this profession deserves. BJ said it well: "You have in your possession a sacred trust. Guard it well."