If you are concerned about the way a chiropractor practices chiropractic, you may wish to take one or more of the following steps:
1) Talk with the chiropractor about your concerns, for in most cases she/he will want to know that you are dissatisfied with the chiropractic services received.2) If applicable, talk with the facility or clinic manger about your situation for they, too, want satisfied patients who will recommend their services.3) If you are unable to receive satisfaction from the above efforts or if you feel it is inappropriate to do (1) and/or (2) above, call the Minnesota Board of Chiropractic Examiners at (651) 201-2850 to discuss your concerns. If the Board is able to be of assistance, you will receive complaint forms. To initiate a formal review, complete the forms and return the packet to the Board. You may also receive complaint forms simply by requesting them from our website.
Most complaints about doctors of chiropractic fall into these categories:
1. Competency matters of all kinds2. Impairment or chemical abuse3. Sexual misconduct4. Misleading advertising or fraud5. Record keeping6. Mismanagement of patient records7. Improper delegation of authorities8. Misleading patients with regard to health care coverage and financial responsibilities
While these are common areas of complaints, there are others. If you are unsure of whether or not you have a complaint that is within the jurisdiction of the Board, you are encouraged to call and discuss it with the Board staff.
The Board can only take action against a doctor of chiropractic's license or other registration. The board can only take action against doctors of chiropractic. It can't help you with problems regarding any other health care professional such as nurses, physical therapists or medical doctors. The Board can't help you with any billing or collection problems unless the doctor of chiropractic is engaged in threatening, dishonest, or misleading fee collection techniques.No, but it is preferred as it facilitates the process by requesting information that may be of assistance in the complaint review process. While the board will evaluate all manner of complaints, including anonymous phone calls, having a completed complaint form allows members of a complaint review committee to actually see the complaint and its details in the complainants own words. Statistics will bear out that those complaints which are reviewed following the receipt of a completed complaint form, are most successfully resolved.First, the Board's staff gathers information from a variety of sources, starting with the information you include in your complaint. The staff may gather health care or billing records, collect data and may interview those involved. You will be asked to sign a release of information form to allow the Board to obtain your records. Signing this release will speed the handling of your complaint. If it is appropriate, the staff will also obtain a response from the doctor of chiropractic involved. This response may initially be in written form, but may be in the form of a meeting between the Board Complaint Panel When the information gathering is completed, the Board Complaint Panel will review the facts and decide whether to take action against the doctor of chiropractic involved.The Board can take a variety of actions: It can limit, place conditions upon, suspend or revoke a doctor of chiropractic's license to practice chiropractic in Minnesota. It can order a doctor of chiropractic to pay civil penalties and to pay all court and investigative costs incurred during the complaint review process. It can order doctors of chiropractic to take more training, to stop treating some illnesses or to stop performing certain procedures. It can order doctors of chiropractic to enroll in appropriate treatment programs. It can issue a written reprimand.During the review process, the board will protect your identity, unless you consent to have it disclosed. Disclosing your identity can, however, assist the board in investigating your complaint, since doctors of chiropractic must respond to specific complaints rather than to general accusations. The Chiropractic Practice Act provides immunity from civil lawsuits or criminal prosecution to people who file a complaint.
There is no set time limit. The length of the review process tends to vary with the complexity of the complaint. Some reviews move very quickly, others take months, some have taken years. Recent changes in procedures and technology have served to speed the process up substantially.You can contact the Board staff at any time. In addition, the Board staff will contact you when the review process is complete and the Board has made a decision about your complaint. If the complaint has resulted in formal action against the doctor of chiropractic, you will receive a copy of the document which describes the action.
The Board receives some complaints that do not lead to action against doctors of chiropractic. The Board cannot take action against a doctor of chiropractic unless there is sufficient evidence to show that the doctor of chiropractic violated Minnesota's Chiropractic Practice Act and related Administrative Rules. The Board must thoroughly review each complaint before it takes any action.The Board's staff may advise you on the services of other governmental agencies or professional associations if the Board is not the appropriate agency to deal with your concerns. Additionally, there may be remedies in other venues such as civil or criminal court.
There are no costs for filing a complaint. The costs for review and resolutions of complaints are borne by the license fees of the practitioners, and to some degree by fines paid by the specific practitioner.The Board's complaint process is designed for the public. If you have questions about filing your complaint, the Board's staff can assist you. Although a complainant (the person filing the complaint) is free to consult an attorney before filing, it is not necessary to do so.
Filing a complaint will not preclude other legal action you choose to consider.The Board of Chiropractic Examiners has seven members including five doctors of chiropractic and two members of the general public, all appointed by the Governor. The Board is supported by a professional staff. The staff and the Board work closely with attorneys from the Minnesota Attorney General's Office when reviewing complaints against doctors of chiropractic. Doctors of chiropractic under investigation are required, by law, to cooperate with the Board and its staff.