Eric Zielinski, D.C. (c), M.P.H. (c), BA Bio
Journal of Philosophy, Principles & Practice of Chiropractic ~ December 30, 2013 ~ Pages 8-14
Introduction: On March 20, 2013, Georgia General Senator Fran Millar (R-Atlanta) introduced SB 261 to the Georgia General Assembly. The bill titled, “Chiropractors; Revise the Definition of the Practice of Chiropractic,” has been written to amend Code Section 43-9-1 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated defining the scope of chiropractic peer review in no other way than by adding the single word “diagnosis.”
Background: The context surrounding SB 261 lends itself to controversy and intraprofessional disputes. More importantly, it is not completely clear why the Georgia Chiropractic Association (GCA) has lobbied to insert the single word “diagnosis” in the peer review section of Code of Georgia: Title 43. As it stands, the word “diagnose” already appears twice in Georgia law.
Analysis: This article addresses the possible role that Sec. 2706 Non-Discrimination in Health Care of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act had in introducing SB 261 to the Georgia Senate. Scope expansion, primary care physician status, public opinion and two case studies from New Mexico and Texas are also evaluated.
Conclusion: Prima facie, scope expansion and PCP status appear advantageous and should be a benefit every chiropractor would aspire toward. However, chiropractic is a profession deeply rooted in philosophical tenets that are oftentimes diametrically opposed to the standard, insurance-approved models of health care and many within the profession are adamantly against it. If history repeats itself, SB 261 will be passed when the Georgia Senate season resumes in 2014. Nonetheless, it may certainly be accompanied by significant opposition from outside the chiropractic profession as well as from within.