20 Oct 2015
The Chiropractic Board of Australia has issued clear guidance on paediatric care and rolled out a campaign to curb advertising breaches, in an ongoing effort to protect patients.
The revised Statement on paediatric care reminds chiropractors to stay abreast of international, peer-reviewed literature and provide evidence-based and patient centred care, to manage the ‘rare but real’ risk posed by chiropractic care of children.
The statement warns chiropractors that ‘clinical experience alone is rarely adequate to support clinical decision-making that is contrary to current evidence and/or best practice’ and reminds practitioners that the Board holds them to account against the standards it sets.
In its campaign to stamp out advertising of chiropractic services that could pose a risk to patients, the Board has sent every chiropractor registered in Australia a reminder about the law in relation to advertising. Read the Board’s latest newsletter, focused on advertising.
‘False and misleading advertising is in nobody’s best interests,’ said the Chair of the Chiropractic Board of Australia, Dr Wayne Minter.
‘We are concerned that advertising by some chiropractors is not consistent with the Board’s standards and have written to every chiropractor registered in Australia via the newsletter to remind them what is legal, and what the Board expects,’ Dr Minter said.
Under the National Law, advertising breaches are managed by AHPRA, on behalf of the National Boards. The National Law sets out the requirements for advertising of regulated health services, which apply to everyone, not just registered health practitioners, including individuals and corporations.
‘Managing advertising breaches is primarily complaints-driven and we encourage anyone with information about matters that may put the public at risk and breach legal requirements to contact AHPRA on 1300 419 495,’ Dr Minter said.
The 14 National Boards in the national regulatory scheme for registered health practitioners (National Scheme) have issued advertising guidelines that aim to make the requirements of the law clear to practitioners who choose to advertise their services.
The Chiropractic Board of Australia’s campaign aimed to raise chiropractors’ awareness of, and increase compliance with, the requirements of the law and the professional standards set by the Board about advertising and evidence-based practice.
The Board has held face to face education and information sessions across Australia last year and reminded reminded practitioners about its advertising and evidence based practice requirements in more than six publications in the past three years, including communiqués, newsletters (which are emailed to every registered chiropractor in Australia), guidelines and FAQs.
The Board’s standards are published on its codes and guidelines page and outlined in the Code of conduct for chiropractors and other codes, guidelines and policies.
AHPRA’s established process for managing statutory offences in relation to advertising is to issue an escalating series of warning letters, advising advertisers of breaches and seeking action to address concerns.
The vast majority of advertisers respond to the first warning letter and amend their advertising accordingly.
Any advertisers who fail to comply with the law after a second warning are considered for prosecution by AHPRA and/ or disciplinary action by the Board.
This approach has proven to be a low cost and effective way of managing breaches of the National Law in relation to advertising.
Make a complaint about advertising and learn more about statutory offences on the What is an offence? page.
Download a PDF of this Media release - Board campaign on professional standards - 20 October 2015 (211 KB,PDF)