Introduction: One expression of the social conscience of chiropractic is the provision by chiropractic educational institutions of low-cost or free chiropractic care to disadvantaged communities. It is expected that institutions offer to all patients the same full standard of care that is the hallmark of traditional chiropractic.
Objective: To explore whether an observed schism occurring within chiropractic education, where a minority of institutions are minimising the major premise of the discipline and replacing it with an emphasis on only the science or literature component of the evidence-based triad, has any potential impact on the quality of care provided particularly within the charitable context.
Data Sources and Synthesis: The indexed literature supplemented by informal literature, news reports, URLs identified by on-line searching, personal communication and key informants. A contextual narrative identifies themes which combine to suggest the healing component of the chiropractic encounter may be compromised. Concern is also expressed that students in those institutions which have removed the major premise of chiropractic from their curriculum may experience compromise in their learning which may negatively impact patient care.
Conclusion: The social conscience of chiropractic may be compromised by undue emphasis on science and the relegation of traditional concepts as historical artefacts. Academic chiropractors seem yet to address potential consequences.
Author keywords: Chiropractic; Medical History; Evidence-Based Practice
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