Arlington, Va. – The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) convened a leadership roundtable this month to explore issues related to equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in chiropractic. The EDI Forum featured a diverse panel of chiropractors who shared not only relevant data but also their personal experience and thoughts on how diversity in the chiropractic profession can be improved.
The EDI Forum, the first of its kind organized by the ACA Committee on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, aimed to continue conversations that ACA began three years ago that resulted in a 2018 diversity statement acknowledging cultural agility as “a foundation for competent healthcare delivery to improve patient outcomes and engage in public health initiatives.”
“For the past three years [the members of the committee] have been instrumental in developing a strategic roadmap for ACA leadership on issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion. We have made great progress in our efforts and will continue to improve upon our work in the coming year,” noted ACA President Robert C. Jones, DC, in his opening remarks.
“We have the capacity to contribute to a more equitable world through the lens of public health,” added William Foshee, DC, chair of the committee.
Keynote speaker Dionne McClain, DC, who is the first African American to serve on the California Board of Chiropractic Examiners, encouraged attendees to step out of their comfort zones to learn more about the history of explicit and implicit bias against minorities and how cultural competency can positively impact health access and outcomes. She underscored the urgent need for the chiropractic profession to learn and adapt to meet the needs of the American population, which data shows is becoming increasingly diverse.
In addition to Dr. McClain, the EDI Forum panelists included Michaela Edwards, DC, president of the American Black Chiropractic Association; Angel Ochoa-Rea, DC, president of the National Gay and Lesbian Chiropractic Association; and ACA Committee on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion members Joshua Lederman, DC, and Nakiesha Pearson, DC, who also served as moderator.
The group touched on several issues throughout the two-hour discussion. Among other things, they agreed the profession could serve minority communities better by enhancing the cultural competency of providers. Attracting more minority students to chiropractic colleges and having more minorities represented in leadership positions within the profession were also cited as key factors in enhancing diversity, equity and inclusion in a meaningful way long term.
About the American Chiropractic Association
The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) is the largest professional chiropractic organization in the United States. ACA attracts the most principled and accomplished chiropractors, who understand that it takes more to be called an ACA chiropractor. We are leading our profession in the most constructive and far-reaching ways—by working hand in hand with other health care professionals, by lobbying for pro-chiropractic legislation and policies, by supporting meaningful research and by using that research to inform our treatment practices. We also provide professional and educational opportunities for all our members and are committed to being a positive and unifying force for the practice of modern chiropractic. To learn more, visit www.acatoday.org, and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.