Wellness Articles

When Chiropractors Act As Primary Care Providers, Costs Drop

A study in the May 2007 issue of the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics reports health plans that use Chiropractors as Primary Care Providers (PCPs) reduce their health care utilization costs significantly.

The study covers the seven-year period from 1999 to 2005. Researchers compared costs and utilization data from an Independent Physicians Association (IPA) that uses Chiropractors as PCPs and a traditional HMO that doesn’t.

The Chiropractic PCPs had 59 percent fewer hospitalizations, 62 percent fewer outpatient surgical cases and 85 percent lower drug costs compared with the HMO plans.

The patients in the Chiropractic PCP group also reported higher satisfaction with their care than the HMO group. Over the seven-year period, Chiropractic patients consistently demonstrated a high degree of satisfaction with their care that ranged from 89 percent to 100 percent.

Study co-author James Winterstein, D.C. says that patients using Chiropractic PCP health care groups “experienced fewer hospitalizations, underwent fewer surgeries and used considerably fewer pharmaceuticals than HMO patients who received traditional medical care.”

“The escalation of medical expenditures remains an urgent problem in the United States and it’s becoming quite clear that cost containment strategies by conventional medical providers are failing to achieve even mediocre results,” he said. “This study confirms that the integration of [medical], chiropractic and other complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) providers can positively impact patient quality of care while limiting costs. This approach to patient care has great potential to improve the U.S. healthcare system.”

Get Off The “Symptom See-Saw”

Do you notice the hum in the air?  Maybe you can’t really hear it, but can you feel it?  Can you feel the vibration?  The “vibrations” around us are not mysterious at all; they are the result of life in motion.  The only thing that is a constant in life is “change.”  Change occurs faster and faster, and sometimes we can feel overwhelmed from the pace.  

A generation or two ago, grandparents used to complain about too much change.  They do not complain about the changes themselves, they complain about the speed of the changes.  Younger people and children are the ones who seem immune to the acceleration of change.  Those who shop for groceries know that evidence of change can be seen at the supermarket.  Try to find a cereal you  purchased last week. You probably won’t find it because  it has already been replaced by a  low-carb, low sugar version.

In spite of the rate of change in many areas of the human experience, some things never change.  For example, we all want to succeed.  We don’t frequently change our life goals of health, financial security and happiness, because none of us would choose to be sick, poor or sad.  We know that motivation and persistence are two key factors of success, no matter what our goals are.  We strive to become healthy and remain healthy.   However, frequently our habits reveal that we have slipped into patterns of motivation that hurt us rather than help us.

What motivates us to seek the help of health professionals: health or sickness?  Unfortunately, many of us would have to answer that we look for help only after we become sick.  When we are motivated by sickness, we seek help only when we already are experiencing symptoms or health issues.  In this circumstance, we are not really in control of the quality of our health because we are taking a reactive rather than active approach to healthcare.  When we take a reactive approach, we rely on pills to mask symptoms.  Although this approach may make us feel better temporarily, it never really helps us achieve and maintain health.  Reactive healthcare leaves us battling symptoms for most of our lives.  Rather than living on the “symptom see-saw,” instead we need to act on a plan designed to achieve and maintain optimal health. 

Corrective chiropractic care is the best way to achieve this goal.  Chiropractic care is a health care approach based upon the body’s natural ability to heal itself and is a very important step in a commitment to optimal health. Optimal health is one of our most valuable possessions.  We should value ourselves enough to strive for the highest level of health.  When we take responsibility for the choices we make regarding health, we give ourselves the best opportunity to achieve all of our health goals.  Chiropractic care can help give us the natural health we deserve when we commit to learning more about our body and take all of the necessary steps to stay well.

Practicing chiropractic for many years years, I have been at the leading edge in healthcare and I have coached thousands of patients of all ages to take full responsibility for their health.  In this blog, I will share with you a wealth of valuable information that is guaranteed to address many of your concerns and answer pressing questions.  It will absolutely provide you with all of the tools necessary to empower you to make the best health choices for you and your family and guide you on a path to “optimal health.”