Many of our patients are appalled that our right to adjust extremities (arms, legs, wrists, elbows, fingers and other such articulations that relate to movement) had been taken away by an appellate court decision. It has hurt all chiropractors and their patients, especially since they are the only ones really qualified universally in NJ to perform these services. Although a chiropractor may still work on these areas, actual adjustments to these joints to reestablish normal movement and free patients of pain has been a mainstay of chiropractic practice for decades.
Our scope of practice had been interpreted by our state chiropractic regulatory board to include the practice which is used across the country, allowing chiropractors a unique solution to many joint problems.
This decision was made during a malpractice case that was won by the chiropractor in question. The attorneys on the other side queried the appellate court as to weather we as a profession can adjust extremities. Of course, they were shown only what the attorneys wanted them to see causing a bad judgement which took away our interpreted practice law since 1991. They over rode our own chiropractic board. Unfortunately, we all fall victims since this was all about legal strategies and trying to win a lost case.
The profession is attempting to overturn this poor decision but also is trying to use the opportunity to also put forth a new scope of practice, which will update NJ's which is from 1954 and it quite restrictive, when compared to other states.
Unfortunately, our attempts to get this passed yesterday, 6/22/07 failed in the hands of the senate. We will again attempt this in September and hopefully, not only will we prevail for the sake of the profession and our patients, but will emerge with a modern practice act which allows us to perform what we learned in school including nutrition.
I will keep you posted