METHODS: A Likert scale electronic questionnaire was sent to licensed doctors of chiropractic of the canton of Berne (n = 47). Percentages, mean values, and standard deviations were calculated. A follow-up survey was used to assess comments from the main survey. A probability value of P < .05 indicated a statistically significant difference.
RESULTS: The response rate was 77%. Forty-one percent of the respondents stated that medications are a necessary component of the chiropractic treatment. Although 92% actively prescribe medication at least once a week, this is significantly less than asked for by their patients (P < .01). Seventy-two percent of the doctors of chiropractic rated the present privilege to prescribe nonprescription medications as an advantage for chiropractic care. Fifty-eight percent thought that chiropractic should aim at expanding the options of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, analgesics, and muscle relaxants that can be prescribed. Ninety-one percent agreed on continuing education in pharmacology. Despite prescribing medication at least once a week, less than half of Bernese doctors of chiropractic perceived medications as a necessary component of their treatment, mainly using them to help patients who cannot sleep because of pain and to speed up recovery. When asked if they would be allowed to prescribe medications of the "B-list," the majority would want structured continuing education.
CONCLUSION: Limited medication prescription was judged as an advantage for the chiropractic profession by this group of survey participants.
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