April 17, 2014 International Chiropractors Association
 
news

November 19, 2002

Mr. Paul E. Steiger
Managing Editor
The Wall Street Journal
200 Liberty Street
New York, New York 10281

Dear Mr. Steiger

Members of the International Chiropractors Association (ICA) as well as private citizens in large numbers have contacted our organization to express their grave concern and disappointment over an article that appeared in yesterday's edition of your paper. This piece, entitled "Should You Try a Chiropractor", presents a grossly distorted view of chiropractic practitioners and procedures, and offers dangerous advice to consumers, both in terms of referrals and regarding x-rays.

The Wall Street Journal management has either been unwittingly used in a damaging, anti-competitive attack on chiropractic, or has editorially taken sides with chiropractic's critics or competitors. Either way, ICA would like the opportunity to discuss this and earlier articles that have appeared in your paper, with a view towards providing sound, documented information on chiropractic to your staff, and ending the regular publication of biased, misleading and unnecessarily frightening articles about the chiropractic profession that have no anchor in the facts.

We are particularly concerned about the warning regarding the use of x-rays. The application of x-ray technology by doctors of chiropractic is a key part of chiropractic education and is included in every state statute authorizing the practice of chiropractic in the United States. It is central to the provision of quality care. The statement in the article to "Beware of anyone who performs x-rays, which are generally not helpful in diagnosing the types of ailments that chiropractic can treat" is simply incorrect. One compelling example is the policy in the federal Medicare program that for nearly 30 years required that every patient be x-rayed. The article also recommends that anyone interested in seeing a chiropractor check with the National Association for Chiropractic Medicine. ICA is particularly concerned about the referral to an all but non-existent group for chiropractic services since this supposed organization does not publish its membership lists and is reported to consist of only a tiny handful, perhaps less than 100, of the more than 50,000 doctors of chiropractic active in the United States alone.

No mainstream chiropractic organization was contacted to obtain hard data or another view of chiropractic science and practice, and it appears clear that the intent of the author was to demean chiropractic and warn consumers away from seeking chiropractic care. ICA, as well as other established chiropractic organizations have, on numerous previous occasions, offered to provide information and comment on chiropractic related stories to The Wall Street Journal. Choosing to uncritically accept the biased slant put forward by a sham group, the paper has once again called into question its objectivity and the quality of its reporting.

In today's highly competitive and confusing health care marketplace, we hope that you will recognize a need to check the facts and look for balance in stories that purport to provide objective advice to consumers. This article did not serve the public and, as a respected publication we hope and expect that you will take steps to correct the misinformation with a follow-up article, and avoid such misrepresentations in the future.

Thank you for your attention. We look forward to your response.

Sincerely yours,
D.D. Humber, DC, FICA President