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Dynamic Chiropractic
February 28, 1990, Volume 08, Issue 05

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TO: Board of Chiropractic, Chairman and Members

FROM: Theresa M. Bender, Counsel to the Board

RE:    SCASA Accreditation

DATE:  September 20, 1989
With the assistance of Dr. Glisson, I have obtained three letters from the United States Department of Education and the Council on Post-secondary Accreditation. These letters clarify the form of recognition granted to SCASA by the U.S. Department of Education.

In a letter dated August 30, 1988, Secretary William J. Bennett of the Department of Education wrote to Mr. Leroy Moore, President of SCASA. In his letter, Mr. Bennett specifically stated "For a period of two years from the date of this letter, I shall list the Association as a nationally recognized accreditating agency for the accreditation and preaccreditation (only with regard to one of your pre-accreditation statuses, candidacy) of straight chiropractic education..." In his letter dated September 28, 1987, Secretary Bennett specifically stated SCASA: recognition was that of "Recognized Candidate for Accreditation." Based on these statements, the Board can conclude that Secretary Bennett limited recognition of SCASA to candidacy or temporary probationary status for a period of two years.

Chapter 460.406 (1) (c), F.S., requires a candidate for licensure to be "a graduate of chiropractic college accredited by, or has status with an agency or its successor which is recognized and approved by the U.S. Office of Education or the Council on Post-secondary Accreditation (COPA), or by the department---" It is within the purview of this Board to interpret this language to mean those chiropractic colleges which have permanent or full recognition or status as an accreditating agency by the U.S. DOE or COPA. Based on this interpretation, SCASA is not an accrediting agency as defined in Chapter 460. 406 (1) (c), F.S.

Furthermore, the Secretary of Education in recognizing SCASA, stated explicitly that the scope of recognition of SCASA is "straight chiropractic education." A letter from President Manning of COPA, on March 30, 1989, quotes Acting Assistant Secretary Kenneth Whitehead as stating that "---I have determined that 'straight' chiropractic constitutes a distinct field of practice." The Federal Court has termed "straight chiropractic" as a "deviant splinter group" of the profession.

Chapter 460.406, F.S., defines the "practice of chiropractic," as well as the terms "chiropractic," "doctor of chiropractic," and "chiropractor." Chapter 460, F.S. also sets out the scope of practice. It is general knowledge in the field of chiropractic that the term "chiropractic" includes diagnostic practice. This is evident throughout Florida's practice act, and in particular, Section 460.406, F.S. It is only "straight chiropractic" that has deviated from this norm and espoused an anti-diagnostic approach to chiropractic practice, thereby constituting a limited scope of practice. Chiropractic and "straight chiropractic" are not the one and same profession, but two separate, distinct professions.

The Board has interpreted Chapter 460,F.S., has a broad scope of practice requiring physical diagnosis in order to properly treat a patient. Without a proper physical diagnostic examination a chiropractor would submit the public to unwarranted and perhaps life threatening conditions, not to mention malpractice. Therefore, an applicant for licensure who does not have the appropriate diagnostic training, but is only trained in "straight chiropractic," does not meet the requirements pertinent to the definition and scope of practice found in Chapter 460, F.S.

Dynamic Chiropractic
February 28, 1990, Volume 08, Issue 05

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