A Different Way

to look at Life, Health, Business and Politics

Chiropractic Missions and The Membership Practice

Posted by Marietta chiropractor on November 1, 2010

In the late 90s, Dr. Jim Sigafoose lead a series of chiropractic missions to Central America.  Over a span of a dozen years, hundreds of chiropractors participated in those missions adjusting hundreds of thousands of people.  Still today, chiropractors do missions work all over the world.

Some of these missions stand out for several reasons.  One was the miracles.  People with chronic illness were healed.  The lame began to walk, the blind to see, the infirm strengthened and the hopeless regained hope.  Another reason was the sheer number of people served.  In single trips lasting up to 10 days, literally hundreds of thousands were adjusted by a mere handful of chiropractors.  Some  adjusted at least 10,000 in a single mission.  That’s 1,000 a day!  Probably one of the greatest things that resulted from those missions is that some chiropractors were set free of limitations.

I remember Sigafoose telling folks one time that participating in a mission had the potential for making or ruining a chiropractor’s practice.  When asked what he meant, he responded “You never see yourself or chiropractic in the same light again.  You’ll either go back and tear down the walls that limit you and chiropractic OR you’ll go back to where you were and resent the things you let hold you back.”

Some chiropractors returned and literally tore down the walls  and began adjusting in the open.  Others began to simplify their procedures and systems.  Still others converted to “All cash” practices to remove interference in their practice by third party payors..

Even today, many chiropractors say “How can it be that simple?”  One answer is to stop practicing as limited scope medical doctors diagnosing every patient and jumping through the hoops required to get paid by insurance carriers.  Still others have been pigeon-holed by their so-called chiropractic “education” into thinking you can’t possibly deliver quality chiropractic care to that many people in that short span of time.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

So, how could so few adjust so many in such a short period of time and STILL give quality chiropractic care?  The answers may amaze you.  Here’s just a few reasons why it worked:

  • Few words were spoken – Because of the language barrier, a simple presentation was made by an interpreter to large groups before getting in line.
  • Adjustments were limited to the upper cervical spine.  In other words, deliver the MOST effective adjustment to the MOST people in the LEAST amount of time.
  • Simplest procedures possible.  No paperwork.  No insurance.  No CYA.  No BS.  Chiropractic analysis ONLY.
  • No worries about money.  Many will say “Of course they were busy.  It was free!”  They paid plenty, just not as a direct fee.
  • The chiropractors had no distractions like phones, families, news, sports or world events.

Many have asked since those mission trips, “How can I integrate THAT perspective into my practice here in the US?”  The simple answer is “You can’t.”  Well, you can’t INTEGRATE that perspective into a traditional American-style chiropractic practice.  Simply put, today’s chiropractic is practiced literally from a Medical perspective with all it’s procedures and complexity.  And to make a point, THAT is exactly what chiropractic wasn’t (and isn’t) at its core.

You can’t integrate simplicity into complexity.  But, you CAN replace complexity with simplicity.  I know it sounds difficult to do.  But, so is falling off a log.  The hardest part is simply deciding to opt out of the complex system practiced here in the US.

Here’s the key.  SIMPLIFY!   That’s it.  Just like with those mission trips, you get back to the very basics of what we do as chiropractors.

  • Tell the story in as few words as possible to as many people as you possibly can.
  • Don’t waste words on idle chatter.
  • Limit paperwork and procedures to the bare minimum required.
  • Do JUST chiropractic!  Locate and correct subluxations.  No medical diagnosis.  Better yet, do ONLY what is necessary.  If nothing else, make sure the Atlas is clear.
  • Offer a simple, affordable fee system that fits into most people’s budget.  Unlimited care plans at a fixed fee makes sense to me.

Personally, I have found The Membership Practice the most congruent way to practice.  The concept is not new, but growing.  I challenge every chiropractor who wants to enjoy their practice more by doing JUST chiropractic to simplify their business on every level.

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2 Responses to “Chiropractic Missions and The Membership Practice”

  1. […] Read the rest here: Chiropractic Missions and The Membership Practice « A Different Way […]

  2. alie said

    heii…..ur site is veri educative….thanks about ur share..)
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