Upcoming Webinar: The Treatment of Whiplash Associated Disorders: A Clinical Practice Guideline

Representatives of ACA and the Canadian Chiropractic Guideline Initiative together will present a free webinar on guidelines for whiplash-associated disorders on June 20 at 9 p.m. ET. Presenters Dr. Andre Bussieres, Dr. Joel Weisberg and Dr. Michele Maiers take a moment to share why the topic is relevant to your practice…and why you won’t want to miss this information-packed webinar. (To learn more about ACA webinars, click here.)

What in your education or experience makes you an authority on the subject of your presentation?

Dr. Weisberg: The mission of the Canadian Chiropractic Guideline Initiative (CCGI) is to develop evidence-informed clinical practice guidelines and best practice recommendations. The CCGI’s Guideline Development Group includes a panel of methodologists, clinical researchers, and clinicians. Twelve panelists–including myself–were involved in writing the Guideline for Neck Pain Associated Disorders.

Dr. Maiers: Having collaborated with CCGI in their opinion leader program, I can attest to numerous examples of where the CCGI’s evidence-informed clinical practice guidelines and best practice recommendations have empowered chiropractors across Canada to improve care, cultivate trust as spinal health experts and enhance their professional position from a policy perspective. As the executive director of research and innovation at Northwestern Health Sciences University and Minnesota’s delegate to the ACA, I see an incredible opportunity for chiropractors in the U.S. to benefit from the information generated by CCGI, and emulate the success of Canadian chiropractors who have adopted these high quality clinical practice guidelines.

Dr. Bussieres: My authority stems from graduate research projects (MSc and PhD) and my work as project lead of the Canadian Chiropractic Guideline Initiative in the areas of the development, dissemination and implementation of clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) since 2013.

Why should chiropractors be interested in learning more about your topic?

Dr. Weisberg: Neck pain and its associated disorders (NAD)—including headaches, pain that radiates into the arm, and upper back pain–is common and results in significant social, psychological and economic burdens. In the United States, neck pain is the fourth leading cause of morbidity and disability. Neck pain is a common reason for consulting primary care providers, including chiropractors.

Dr. Maiers: Neck pain and its associated disorders, including whiplash, are common and costly. Many chiropractors have found themselves in the position of debating best practices for neck pain with payers and policy makers. This webinar is an opportunity to learn the most current and highest quality evidence for treating neck pain and associated disorders, undoubtedly improving providers’ care of their patients and strengthening their position in care plan negotiations.

Dr. Bussieres: Keeping up-to-date is increasingly difficult for the busy clinician considering the enormous volume of research produced each year. Importantly, large variations in the quality care provided to patients with musculoskeletal disorders have been observed around the globe. As a result, clinicians are encouraged to adopt and use well designed clinical practice guideline (CPG) recommendations and best practice documents to inform clinical decision-making along with their clinical experience and patient preference and values.

How can the information you share in your presentation directly help chiropractors in practice?

Dr. Weisberg: The clinical management of neck pain disorders can be complex and involve combining multiple interventions to address its symptoms and consequences. The aim of this particular clinical practice guideline is to help improve clinical decision making and delivery of care for patients with neck pain associated disorders.

Dr. Maiers: The clinical practice guideline we will present provides very pragmatic information for varying the treatment approach to neck pain based on patient presentation and history, and describes how to optimize the use of therapies chiropractors use in practice every day.

Dr. Bussieres: Clinical practice guideline recommendations are based on systematic summaries of current research on a topic and a panel composed of clinicians’ experts in the field, researchers, decision makers and patient representatives. Guidelines are tools, not rules. They are designed to bring the latest information to clinicians in a way that aims to reduce bias.

Finish this sentence: “You don’t want to miss my webinar because…”

Dr. Weisberg: “… these new recommendations and how they can be utilized in practice the very next day will be explained.”

Dr. Maiers: “… there is a lot of poor quality information being peddled to the chiropractic community. This webinar cuts through noise and presents best practices based on the highest quality research, in practical terms.”

Dr. Bussieres: “…by attending this webinar, you will be provided with up-to-date information on strategies to help manage patients presenting with neck pain and whiplash associated disorders. This will save you hours of reading and provide you with information and tools you can use to help treat patients on Monday morning.

What about you or your presentation may surprise people?

Dr. Weisberg: Participants may be surprised by how familiar and easily implementable evidence-informed best practices can be.

Dr. Maiers: Using research findings in practice doesn’t have to be complicated.

Dr. Bussieres: A number of tools and resources are now available to help clinicians make sense of the key recommendations on the management of neck pain and whiplash associated disorders.

What’s one thing you learned later in your career that you wished you would have known from the beginning?

Dr. Maiers: Incredible work is being done within the chiropractic community around the world. Smart partnerships—like the CCGI’s offer to share this webinar with ACA—is a great example of how a small profession like chiropractic can efficiently and effectively leverage information to benefit chiropractic practices everywhere.

Dr. Bussieres: I don’t need to spend time reading all the new research that is produced in my field. Instead, I purposely identify the best available evidence in the form of CPGs and systematic reviews on clinical topics of interest, which gives me an overview of the recent quality research.

Presenter’s choice: Can you think of another question you’d like to answer that would be useful for potential attendees of your seminar or shed more light on you as a presenter?

Dr. Bussieres: Where can clinicians find recent CPGs, best practice documents, and related tools and resources? Answer: On the CCGI website.