Margaret Coats (Chief executive of General Chiropractic Council)
General Chiropractic Council
44 Wicklow Street
London WC1X 9HL
Friday, November 14, 2008
Dear Mrs Coats,
I wish to resign from the Chiropractic register as of January 1 2009, because in my opinion the General Chiropractic Council is not “Fit for Purpose”. Many of the reasons leading me to this decision, were outlined in my statement at the meeting of the General Chiropractic Council (GCC) on March 3rd. For example the GCC has failed in its statutory duty to protect the public by not investigating an allegation of a chiropractor using a prepayment scheme to coerce £2,000 from a patient. The GCC also provided misleading information in a Freedom of Information response concerning this incident and I consider the investigation into the matter totally inadequate.
I would add that as President of The AECC Student Union in 1996, I flagged concerns regarding the education standards of practitioners who were being “grandfathered” onto the chiropractic register. I was given assurances by the current chairman of the GCC Peter Dixon (then president of the British Chiropractic Association) that the Internationally recognised ECCE standard of chiropractic education would be the gold standard within five years of the register opening. This has not happened and the GCC’s failure to insist on the European (ECCE) standard of chiropractic education in the UK is resulting in less competent chiropractors practising and now many of them will seek prescribing rights to cover up their lack of competence at providing spinal care.
I am not alone in my disappointment with the GCC, a survey of the chiropractic profession in 2006 found that 77% of the profession had no confidence in the GCC and my election onto the GCC in 2007 only confirmed that view. There is no evidence of a change of heart within the profession and a number of prominent members have resigned from the register this year. Much of the antagonism towards the GCC emanated from the subversive activities of former GCC executive officer Gregory Price, who posted obscene and derogatory messages about me and other chiropractors on the internet. Rather than apologise for the activities of your employee, the GCC management attempted to hide them from the profession, to the extent that Mr Price was allowed to resign his position at the GCC and work for another regulatory body (UKCP) with GCC management’s knowledge.
From January 1st 2009 my professional title in the UK will be; Spinal Health Care Practitioner, however this does not change the fact, I trained for five years at the Anglo European College of Chiropractic, the college which has set the European standard for chiropractic education, I received my masters in health promotion from Brunel University in 2004, was awarded a Fellowship by the College of Chiropractors in 2008. I will continue to provide the highest standard of chiropractic as always and will maintain my continuing professional development (CPD) under the Irish Chiropractic Association.