My blogs generally focus on nutrition and other topics that relate to health. That is the main focus of my practice. But as a chiropractor by training I still see some patients that want just that – chiropractic. I enjoy those patients because I feel as if it gets me back to my roots, so to speak.
Recently I came across a study that was just too good not to share with all of you. It was about low back pain, its costs to patients and insurance carriers, and how starting your care with a chiropractor can save an astonishing 40%! This is big news in this day and age with health care costs skyrocketing. The medical profession and insurance companies should take notice and stop putting so many road blocks in the way of getting quality chiropractic care for people.
The new study showed that people who initiated care for low back pain with chiropractors saved an average of 40% over people who initiated care with a medical doctor.
The study collected data from 85,000 Blue Cross Blue Shield beneficiaries. It concluded that insurance companies that restrict access the chiropractic will likely end up paying more for care. This is precisely what insurance companies should be trying not to do.
The study was published in the December 2010 issue of the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics. It looked at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee over a two year span. The people in the study had open access to medical doctors and doctors of chiropractic through self-referral. There were no limits applied to the number of MD or DC visits and no differences in co-pays.
The study showed that people who started their care with a chiropractor instead of a medical doctor saved their insurance company almost 40%. They calculated that would save BCBS of Tennessee $2.3 million annually.
I’m not one to listen to the insurance companies crying poor. This story isn’t about saving insurance companies more money. The point is that chiropractic has been shown to be more effective than conservative medical care and this study shows that it is also more cost effective. Considering 85% of people will experience back pain in their life time and in a time when health care costs are on the national stage, this story should be front and center.
So next time you have back pain, make sure you see a chiropractor first. Not only is it more effective, it will save you money!