The ACA blog provides readers with information to help them advance their knowledge, achieve their professional goals and strive for excellence, while also creating a greater sense of community among chiropractors nationwide through online engagement and information-sharing with their colleagues.

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ACA Convenes Stakeholder Forum to Address Opioid Crisis, Collaboration

The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) hosted a historic Stakeholder Collaborative Forum on Jan. 26 at Northwestern Health Sciences University to delve deeper into the current market need for chiropractors in combating the opioid crisis as well as issues related to chiropractors working within or in collaboration with hospitals and health systems. Michele Maiers, DC, PhD, facilitated the meeting with the primary goal to identify industry trends and how to position members to be successful.  Several qualities were identified and work groups were established to help guide ACA in the creation of toolkits we can provide for our members. 

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My Rotation Through a VA Pain Medicine Clinic

Part of a series on the chiropractic residency program in the VA health care system

Some of the most valuable knowledge you gain in the Veterans Affairs (VA) chiropractic residency program comes from rotating in other specialties. Within the VA Connecticut Healthcare System, Stephanie Halloran, DC, rotates at both the West Haven and Newington locations. Thus far, she has spent time in rheumatology, physiatry, women’s clinic (primary care), neurology, pain medicine and the interventional pain clinic. Although she says each rotation has contributed greatly to her clinical acumen, in this post she primarily focuses on what she learned in pain medicine.

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NCLC General Session: Essential Role of Chiropractors in Primary Care

Speaker Margaret Flinter, PhD, APRN, to share insights into how chiropractors make an impact at community health centers.

Margaret Flinter recalls how she and colleague James Lehman, DC, together realized the significant impact chiropractors could make in the community health setting: "As the epidemic of opioid use and addiction took hold in our state and country, we grappled with the need to study, identify and implement new ways to approach pain in its acute and chronic forms. We [began] to consider whether the formal integration of chiropractors in primary careparticularly in what we call 

'safety net settings' such as community health centers that serve 24 million people across the countrywould be an effective and perhaps transformative strategy. And it has been." 

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VA Residents Attend North American Spine Society’s Annual Symposium

In late October, three of the five chiropractic residents within the Veterans Administration (VA) health care system attended the North American Spine Society’s (NASS) annual symposium in Orlando, Fla.  Rachel Mooers from Los Angeles, Stephanie Halloran from West Haven, Conn., and I spent four days immersing ourselves in spine care from a (mostly) different perspective.

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VA Residency: Anatomy of a Day in Greater Los Angeles

The saying goes: If you’ve seen one VA hospital, you’ve seen one VA hospital. Across the board, there are many similarities between the chiropractic residency sites. However, each has its own flavor – making them unique in their own way. As a New Jersey native, moving to the opposite side of the country wasn’t even a question when I discovered my acceptance to the VA chiropractic residency program in Los Angeles (although retiring my snow shovel for year-round sunshine made the decision quite acceptable, let me tell you…). The opportunity to treat our nation’s veterans in this setting was a dream come true, and almost four months in, I couldn’t be happier. 

Author: Rachel Clark
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Busy Days at the VA Yield Opportunities to Elevate Skills and Knowledge

VA chiropractic resident Stephanie Halloran, DC, frequently finds herself fielding questions about her day-to-day routine in the Veterans Administration (VA) from family, friends and colleagues. The Connecticut VA Healthcare System has two chiropractic sites located in West Haven and Newington. Dr. Halloran is primarily at the West Haven campus, but spends at least every other Tuesday in Newington. Collectively she works under the guidance of Drs. Anthony Lisi, Christopher Coulis, Lauren Austin-McClellan, Nathanial Majoris, and Todd Kawecki. Although each day can vary, Dr. Halloran offers this look into a typical VA resident schedule.

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A Typical Week at the St. Louis VA Medical Center

I’ve had more than a handful of family and friends ask me, “What’s it like working for the VA in St Louis?” and my response is always the same—“It’s great!”  I usually then proceed to give them a rundown of what a typical week looks like as my activities vary from day to day and sometimes from month to month.  An average week is broken down into four different segments: outpatient clinic, interdisciplinary pain rehabilitation (IPR) program, scholarly activities, and clinical rotations. The majority of my time is spent in clinic helping veterans manage their pain and develop healthy habits for self-care. However, the time spent outside the clinic has also been beneficial for personal development and education.

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ACA Today: Not the Same as Yesterday

Nearly two years ago, ACA embarked on a new journey – a branding initiative – to better understand how we can relate to and remain relevant to members now and in the future. We hired a well known branding consultant who reached out to members, non-members, other health care providers and a variety of stakeholders to ask what ACA means to them. After more than 30 hours of interviews, hundreds of survey responses and volumes of research, our consultant’s recommendations were presented to ACA’s Board of Governors last year on how best to redefine our brand. The results were a wake-up call, to say the least. While some of the information uncovered was expected, other findings and comments were uncomfortable to hear. But we had to hear them. 

Author: David Herd
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VA’s Chiropractic Residents Share Experiences and Insights: New Blog Series

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) chiropractic residency program reached an historic milestone in 2016 when each of the five sites received accreditation from the Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE)—they are the first U.S. chiropractic residency programs to be awarded this distinction. The programs were also successful in many VA performance metrics, including recruitment of high-quality applicants, 100 percent graduation rates, high degree of graduate placement in VA and/or other hospital settings, and high satisfaction across multiple stakeholders. Consequently, in early 2017 VA transitioned the chiropractic residency pilot into a standing residency program. Two residents of the program will share their experiences through a new ACA blog post series. 
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DC2017 Opening Speakers Stress Chiropractic’s Opportunity to Make an Impact

Chiropractors are part of the solution to opioid addiction, high costs of spinal pain treatment and health care collaboration.

The chiropractic profession must take bold, innovative steps forward and collaborate with other professions to make an impact on some of the major challenges and trends in health care, according to speakers featured at the opening session of DC2017 in Washington, D.C., last week. The lineup of thought leaders from both inside and outside the profession challenged chiropractors to examine what they could do as a profession and individually to meet the needs of a society struggling with spinal pain, painkiller addiction and runaway health care costs.
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