Proactive Information for the Profession

The New York Chiropractic Council is frequently used as a source of information for practicing chiropractors in NYS.

These are the Questions Related to Practice

The answers are color coded based on two things.

RED: THESE STATEMENTS ARE BASED ON NYS EDUCATION LAW FOR CHIROPRACTIC AND OUR CONVERSATION WITHN THE NYS BOARD OF CHIROPRACTIC.

BLUE: THESE STATEMENTS ARE SOLELY THE OPINION OF THE NEW YORK CHIROPRACTIC COUNCIL AND NOT NECESSARILY THAT OF THE NYS BOARD OF CHIROPRACTIC.

Can a chiropractor perform a DOT exam in NYS?

No.

The Department of Education has interpreted that our scope limits us to the exam for a Subluxation.  What they failed to address is the section that states and the effects there of.   We are trained to evaluate and recognize situations that present to us which may or may not relate to a Subluxation.  When it is not related to a Subluxation we are required to refer to the appropriate professional.  In our opinion the fact that our scope allows us to treat a Subluxation should not preclude us from doing an exam to measure a person's functional status and their ability to do their job. 

No individual health professional is an expert in all aspects of health specialties, but we are all trained at a high level to recognize potential health concerns that may need further evaluation by the appropriate professional.  For example, do we need to refer out.  We do an exam looking for a Subluxation but just like a cardiologist may find out there is a gastro problem and refer out.  We are not required to name the  other diagnosis but we are required to refer out to the appropriate profession when necessary.  This is a case where we are already held to the standard of documentation and to the level of an exam but told that we are unable to be paid for doing these exams.

The DOT exam is a basic exam to determine if the person can go to work.  It doesn't take an expert in all areas to be able to do this exam.  And you can never expect any profession to be an expert in all fields.  For example a Cardiologist is unable to be an expert in gastroenterology or orthopedics yet he can perform the DOT exam.

Is the DOT exam issue an important issue for the New York Chiropractic Council?

It's not so much an important issue as an issue of discrimination.  According to our Core Values a DOT exam is not a core office procedure that every chiropractor has to do.  Core value number three, states:  “We recognize that subluxations compromise the expression of innate intelligence, and that assisting in the prevention and reduction of subluxations will facilitate and promote the expression of optimal health.” This specifically mentions Subluxation and that is something all our exams should always be looking for, as we are Chiropractors.  But with that being said, the Council will fight against any discrimination to our profession.

 

Can we adjust extremities in NYS?

Yes, a Chiropractor may adjust extremities in NYS.  Chiropractic regulations define chiropractic as detecting and correcting by manual or mechanical means structural imbalance, distortion, or subluxations in the human body for the purpose of removing nerve interference and the effects thereof, where such interference is the result of or related to distortion, misalignment or subluxation of/ or in the vertebral column.

If the extremity misalignment is related to, or can cause interference at the spinal level then adjusting that extremity to reduce dysafferentation from that neuromere is appropriate.

Can we recommend or prescribe nutrition supplements?

Yes, a chiropractor licensed in NYS if his college courses included nutrition, may provide counseling on this subject.  A chiropractor may also dispense food concentrates, vitamins, minerals, and other nutritional supplements. 

Since chiropractic strives to bring about normal function of the body, to bring about health and not the treatment of disease, the use of nutrition in chiropractic practice should have a similar role. That role is to bring about health through eliminating a deficiency or toxicity and not the treatment of disease. This is most important when communicating expectations to a patient. You are not treating a disease. You are offering support to produce a healthier expression.

Can we perform urinalysis?

A NYS licensed chiropractor may collect and send out to a laboratory, or order a collection by a lab for the purpose of a urinalysis.

Can we discuss with the patient possible causes of Subluxation?  Can we discuss the possible stress on the body and nervous system from the use of drugs or foods and then send to the appropriate professional for further information? Can we comment on our patients medications?

The law is clear that we cannot prescribe, administer, dispense or use in legend drugs or medicines.  Nowhere in the law does it state that chiropractors are prohibited from providing information regarding the negative chemical effects on the body and the nervous system.

Yes, a responsible chiropractor can and should educate their patient on the causes of lifestyle stress to the nervous system that could cause a Subluxation.  There are three large categories of negative stress that can overwhelm the nervous system. Chiropractors can and should be able to explain this to improve their patient’s outcome and health. One of these categories of negative stress is a chemical cause.  Since a patient's medication, nutrition and, environmental exposures can create a negative overwhelm in the nervous system, a responsible chiropractor should be able to provide this information to their patient.   If the possible negative chemical overwhelm involves a medication, then imparting information to the patient and making a referral to the necessary health provider is appropriate. This does not allow a chiropractor to tell a patient to take, or not to take, a medication that is the realm of the medical doctor. 

Can we do blood tests for our patients? 

Chiropractors may refer out to and use a CLIA certified clinical lab to analyze blood for diagnostic purposes.

Can we perform the federal DOT exam for our patients?

 No.  We are only able to perform the exam for the purpose of determining whether the person has a Subluxation or not.  A DOT exam is not done for this purpose.

Can a chiropractor employ an unlicensed assistant to record a patient history, or results of a diagnostic test? 

Yes.  As long as there is no interpretation of data, an unlicensed chiropractic assistant may record the results of testing.

  

The answers are color coded based on two things.

RED: THESE STATEMENTS ARE BASED ON NYS EDUCATION LAW FOR CHIROPRACTIC AND OUR CONVERSATION WITHN THE NYS BOARD OF CHIROPRACTIC.

BLUE: THESE STATEMENTS ARE SOLELY THE OPINION OF THE NEW YORK CHIROPRACTIC COUNCIL AND NOT NECESSARILY THAT OF THE NYS BOARD OF CHIROPRACTIC.

 

 

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