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’s Legislative Priorities for the 115th Congress

With the new year and the second session of the 115th Congress now underway, the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) is ready to tackle several important legislative issues on behalf of chiropractors and their patients nationwide. From Medicare equality to health care reform and more, learn which topics ACA will put at the forefront of its advocacy efforts.

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Federal Tax Bill Contains Language Pertinent to DCs, Chiropractic Students

*Member-Exclusive Content* The federal tax bill approved by Congress today—and on its way now to the president's desk for his signature—contains several provisions that may affect chiropractic clinics and chiropractic students. Among the massive rework of the federal tax code is language that deals with “pass through” business tax, student loans and changes to the Affordable Care Act.

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10 Changes for the Better in Chiropractic History

Driven by rising health care costs, the constant barrage of new research knowledge and the increasing integration of technology, the way in which all health care providers take care of patients in this country--in this world--is changing rapidly. This evolving health care environment means that, while we remain steadfast at the core of who we are and what we do stand for as a chiropractic profession, expectations regarding some of the ways in which we practice are beginning to change.

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Chiropractors Treating Veterans Asked to Join Referral Network

*Member-Exclusive Content* Chiropractors treating veterans via programs administered through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) were notified recently that they should enroll in a new chiropractic referral network to continue participating in the VA’s Community Care Network (CCN). In its letter to chiropractors, contractor TriWest Healthcare Alliance explained that providers who wish to participate in the “new” Community Care Network must enroll in EmpowerChiro, a chiropractic referral network administered under TriWest. Referrals, appointment scheduling, documentation, claims, codes and reimbursement were also briefly touched upon--leading to questions this blog post seeks to answer.

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Author: Jack Dusik
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Chiropractic's Quest for Full Physician Status in Medicare: A Brief History

October is National Chiropractic Health Month, a fitting designation as on Oct. 30, 1972, President Nixon signed into law H.R. 1, the Social Security Amendments of 1972, ending three years of deliberations on what would improve the program. What the president called "landmark legislation" included the significant and far-reaching provision of defining chiropractors as “physicians” in the Medicare program under Sec. 18619(r)(5) of the Social Security Act. Unfortunately, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) regulators interpreted the law to define the physician status granted to chiropractors in a way that restricted their ability to participate meaningfully, on a level of basic parity.

Author: Jack Dusik
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Gallup Event Explores Non-drug Approaches to Pain

It’s pretty difficult to open up a newspaper these days without seeing an article on the devastating public health impact of the opioid epidemic in the United States. While there appears to be general agreement on the scope of the problem, there is less consensus regarding what can be done to solve it. Policy-makers and professional associations taking on this challenge have tended to focus on mortality statistics and/or expert opinion. These are obviously critically important pieces of the puzzle but it is also important to take a patient-centered approach. To facilitate discussion on this important topic, Gallup held a research release event on Sept. 12 in Washington, D.C., titled “Addressing the Opioid Epidemic With Drug-Free Pain Management.”
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Veterans Choice Program: Six-Month Extension Clears Congress for President’s Signature

Doctors of chiropractic treating veterans through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' Veterans Choice Program (VCP) received good news on Aug. 1, with Senate approval of the “VA Choice and Quality Employment Act of 2017.” The bill passed without objection on the heels of House action last week, which approved the measure overwhelmingly, 414-0. The legislation directs $2.1 billion to the VCP to keep it operating through January 2018, preventing a disruption of care for veterans in the program as Congress continues to work on a broader overhaul.

Author: Jack Dusik
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House Advances Pro-Chiropractic Bill to Boost Ranks of Certified Medical Examiners

The U.S. House of Representatives on June 26 overwhelmingly approved the “Veterans Expanded Trucking Opportunities Act of 2017” (H.R. 2547), sponsored by Reps. Rob Woodall (R-Ga.) and Julia Brownley (D-Calif.). The bipartisan bill aims to ease the transition of military personnel seeking commercial driver's licenses by increasing the number of health professionals―including chiropractors―serving at U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) medical facilities who are eligible to conduct physicals for truck drivers.

Author: Jack Dusik
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Veterans Groups Salute Chiropractic

Urge Members of Congress to Support Expanded Access to Chiropractic for Veterans

Readers who follow the American Chiropractic Association know full implementation of the chiropractic benefit in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health care system is one of the premier issues ACA is diligently working to address. Recently, the Senate VA Committee held a hearing on pending health and benefits legislation where it considered several bills, including S. 609, "The Chiropractic Care to All Veterans Act of 2017," which received support from numerous veterans service organizations. 

Author: Jack Dusik
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Physical and Cognitive Decline: When Should We Stop Practicing?

*Member-Exclusive Content* There’s no doubt most all of us will develop some degree of decline in physical and cognitive capacity as we age. As America’s population matures, the need for health and wellness facilities and services will continue to increase. Researchers are studying the mechanisms and resolutions for this decline in mental, physical and cognitive health with growing age. In respect to healthcare providers, the concerning question is: How do we ensure older doctors are competent to treat patients? 

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Author: John Stump
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