Saskatchewan Decision-makers Get Stupider

I just read this article about how the Saskatchewan provincial government plans to end the subsidy it provides to chiropractors. Of all the stupid decisions that the Saskatchewan goverment has made lately, this is the stupidest. I realise they have to cover their arses for the utterly irresponsible budget they passed last year that depended so heavily on one resource that even the people working in that industry thought it was irresponsible. I realise that “times are tough” and the guvviment has to, as a governing body, tighten our proverbial belt.

But listen.

Just like supporting and training midwives in the province will save millions of dollars in health care, making chiropractic care affordable prevents all kinds of patients from requiring more intensive care. Chiropractic care relieves pain, restores mobility, and improves posture.

If you’re lucky, your health plan will cover chiropractic. If you’re not lucky, you’ll now be either paying out of pocket for chiropractic care, or you’ll be waiting longer to see specialists and surgeons.

So. Bad move, SaskParty. Bad, bad move. I was tempted, you know, to think about voting for you. But where are our midwives? THREE YEARS before a licensed midwife will be practising in Regina? And now you take away chiropractic care? Bad move in an election year. Dummies.





6 responses to “Saskatchewan Decision-makers Get Stupider”

  1. Smarty Pants Avatar
    Smarty Pants

    I just can’t get all that enraged about an extra 20 bucks out of pocket.
    It’s irritating to be sure, but hardly a crisis, IMHO.
    Every Chiro patient in the province is going to stop seeing a Chriopractor over this, and swamp the Medical system? I doubt it very much.

    1. cenobyte Avatar

      Also, I didn’t say it was a CRISIS. I said it was a dumb move.

  2. cenobyte Avatar

    Smarty Pants, that isn’t the point.

    First of all, it’s not a $20 rise in fees; it could be as much as a $40 rise in fees. That might not mean much to you, but if you’re getting treatments once a week, and you’re on a fixed income because you’re retired, or because you work in labour/trades/retail, that IS a lot.

    Secondly, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. Currently, but subsidising chiropractic care, the Provincial Government is *saving money* in primary health care. This has been proven in places like Ontario and BC where the governments cut provincial funding for chiropractic; they are now paying more for things like physiotherapists, surgeons, occupational therapists, etc., because the patients get that care “free” on referral. PLUS, since it takes so long to see a specialist, by the time those patients get *to* the specialist, their problems are exacerbated (not exasperated. The patients themselves might be exasperated…).

    Chiropractic helps align and release tension and pain from every joint in the body, not just the back. So all those knee surgeries you’re waiting on…hips…shoulders…those waiting lists will get much, much longer.

    No, I’m not saying every patient who goes to a chiropractor will now go to specialists. I’m saying that a *lot* of them will. Enough to make already too-long waiting lists for care even longer. AND it will end up costing more in the long run.

    The point *is* that it’s a bad, shortsighted, and irresponsible decision, it’s the wrong decision, and it will end up hurting the SaskParty in the end. If they don’t self-implode before that.

  3. Coyote Avatar

    As a corollary to that, most European style health care systems actual focus on preventative medicine instead of curative. Quitting smoking aids are covered by the government, health club memberships are covered by some countries, massage, chiropractic, just about everything and anything you can think of that leads to better health and would prevent future health issues is covered. Strangely enough, no waiting times, and their overall expendature on health care is about 20% less per capita. Neat huh?

  4. Greg Avatar

    I would be pissed off about the Sask party’s move, except for that fact that the whole chiropractic practise has no scientify basis.. they is no reason other then in a persons head that manipulation of the spine is helpful too the body. and a lot of ppl have had their back/spines F*CKED UP BADLY by it. Yes we will need more physiotherapists, ccupational therapists, and massage therapists. but at least those ppl have taken 4 years learning how the body heals.

    1. cenobyte Avatar

      Do you mean “sciencey”? “Scientific”?

      Okay, now that my being a jerk is done with, I have to disagree with you. Licensed, registered chiropractors *do* take extensive education; they have to earn a four-year undergraduate degree in sciences before they can apply to do a professional Chiropractic degree. Some educational institutions offer a Masters of Science degree in Chiropractic, and there are integrated BSc degrees focussing on Chiropractic. Already, after having gone through that, Chiropractors have more education than massage therapy. Following their University education, they have to intern for a full year before writing a Canadian Chiropractic Association examinations (if you’d like to see the kinds of things they have to know for this exam, go here). There are the *basic* guidelines set out by the World Health Organisation. In Canada and in other countries where Chiropractic is an accepted and important aspect of health care, rehabilitation, and preventative health care, more education/training/certification is also required.

      People who say that chiropractors are not trained as well as physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and massage therapists are, Greg, misinformed. They have a *different* education, but by far, not a *less extensive* education.

      In fact, Greg,

      Canadian Chiropractic students undergo a course of study similar to that of other doctoral-level health care professionals, including medicine, optometry and dentistry and have similar entrance requirements. Students are required to complete a minimum of three years of university before they are eligible for admission to the CMCC Doctorate of Chiropractic Degree program. The majority of students entering the CMCC program have completed a baccalaureate university degree, and approximately 7% have a graduate degree

      – from Wikipedia’s entry on Chiropractic in Canada

      So Doctors of Chiropractic in Canada have *as much as*, if not *more* education than physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and certainly more than most massage therapists.

      Sure, some people have been injured by chiropractic care. As a correlation, I went to a dentist once who damaged my teeth so badly that I needed nearly a thousand dollars’ worth of repair work, and my teeth are *still* not in top condition, and it’s been five years since the first work was done. What point am I trying to make? All health services professionals (including doctors, nurses, veterenarians, physiotherapists) make mistakes. And when a health professional makes a mistake, people usually suffer.

      Unfortunately, though, Greg, you were given some incorrect information about the training of chiropractors, their practices, and the importance of their care in the Saskatchewan health system.

      Thanks for the comment!

i make squee noises when you tell me stuff.

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