Friday, May 22, 2009

The General Chiropractic Council Writes

Dear Sir/Madam

The General Chiropractic Council investigates all the complaints its receives against its registrants, regardless of the source of the complaint.

The title 'doctor' is a courtesy title that chiropractors can choose to use. Our Code of Practice at C1.8 states that chiropractors

"must not use any title or qualification in such a way that the public may be misled as to its meaning or significance. In particular, chiropractors who use the title of ‘doctor’ and who are not registered medical practitioners must ensure that they make it clear that they are registered chiropractors and not registered medical practitioners."

The Code of Practice is binding and all registrants must comply with its provisions.

Please advise anyone who has a concern about a chiropractor to contact the GCC, the statutory regulatory body for chiropractors in the UK.

I hope this information assists you.

Yours sincerely

Specialist Officer (Regulation)
General Chiropractic Council
Anyone operating as a Chiropractic in the UK must be registered with the GCC; they are the statutory regulatory body for the industry. If a Chiropractic isn't registered they are already breaking the law. You can search for them in the GCC registry here.

I'm not quite sure how much effort a complaint about inappropriate advertising to the GCC may be. Instructions can be found here, though, and it would be useful to complain to both the GCC and the ASA simultaneously as the appropriateness of use of the term "Doctor" is ultimately subjective.

It amuses me that part of the GCC code states "Chiropractors must make sure their own beliefs and values do not prejudice their patients’ care." The rule is designed to prevent chiropractors discriminating against homosexual patients, say, or ethnic minorities. It's a pity "beliefs" doesn't include belief in efficacy.

The GCC appear to take regulation seriously, though they do put out a patient information leaflet which features implicit claims that chiropractic can help with asthma and colic. As the ASA pointed out earlier this week, there is enough evidence to suggest further research is needed, but not enough evidence to comfortably make these claims.


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  2. I deleted your comment, Mr Carter, because I don't want people to advertise via my blog. I'll be happy to host your comment if you remove the link to your website.


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