Objective: The purposes of this study were to survey Council on Chiropractic Education–accredited chiropractic colleges in North America and to describe curricular details on the teaching of bioethics.
Methods: A custom-designed survey was sent to chiropractic colleges. Total number of contact hours, whether the ethics was a stand-alone course or integrated elsewhere, type of instructor, and if there was a required or recommended course text were queried.
Results: Of 19 surveys sent by mail, 15 surveys were returned. The average time in ethics instruction was 18.7 hours including lecture format, small group tutorial, and self-study. Chiropractic ethics education includes 8 areas of content (boundaries, law and jurisprudence, professionalism, basic ethic tenets/principles, ethical codes of conduct, prevention of financial and of sexual abuse, and resolving an ethical dilemma). Some colleges include content taught to students under the domain of law and jurisprudence.
Conclusion: The results of this survey indicate that there are opportunities to further develop the educational ethics program at Council on Chiropractic Education–accredited colleges. All colleges currently offer bioethics teaching. An expanded role for this content is recommended so as to offer optimal benefit for students and practitioners.
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