Characteristics, Expectations, Experiences of Care, and Satisfaction of Patients Receiving Chiropractic Care in a French University Hospital in Toulouse (France) Over One Year: A Case Study

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SOURCE:   BMC Musculoskelet Disord 2022 (Mar 9); 23 (1): 229


Mallard F, Lemeunier N, Mior S, Pecourneau V, and Côté P

Division of Graduate Studies,
Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College (CMCC),
Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

FROM: ChiroUp (2021)

Background:   In October 2017, a partnership was established between the University Hospital of Toulouse and the French Chiropractic College, “Institut Franco-Européen de Chiropraxie” (IFEC). Before 2017, chiropractors did not practice in hospitals in France. Chiropractic students and chiropractors are now integrated in an interdisciplinary medical team at University Hospital. Our study aimed to describe the characteristics of patients who received chiropractic care at the University Hospital of Toulouse, their expectations, experiences of care, and satisfaction.

Method:   A prospective case study was conducted. Patients referred for chiropractic care in the French University Hospital of Toulouse from January to December 2020 were eligible to participate. Participants provided the following data: demographics, previous chiropractic care treatments, pain location, intensity (NRS) and duration, disability (NDI, ODI), health-related quality of life (SF-12) and depressive symptomatology (PHQ-9). We conducted semi-structured interviews to explore their expectations, barriers and facilitators impacting their experience of care, and satisfaction.

Method:   Seventeen participants were recruited and seven were interviewed. All participants had chronic pain with a median pain intensity of 05/10 (IQR 04-06) on the NRS scale. Nine of 17 participants presented with multiple pain locations. Thirteen of seventeen participants presented with low back pain and eight with neck pain. The median SF-12 health-related quality of life score was 50/100 (IQR 28.5-60.5) for physical health, and 52/100 (IQR 43-62) for mental health. The PHQ-9 median score of depressive symptomatology was 7.7/27 (IQR 2.0-12.5). Overall, participants were satisfied with their care and the collaboration between chiropractors and physicians. Participants expected a caring communication with the chiropractic team. Their experience was facilitated by their trust in their physician. Patients perceived the turnover of chiropractic students as a barrier to their satisfaction.

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Conclusion:   Our participants presented with chronic musculoskeletal pain and depressive symptoms. Our study identified facilitators and barriers for patient expectation and satisfaction with chiropractic care in a hospital setting. This study provides the first data describing the collaboration between chiropractors and physicians in France in the management of musculoskeletal disorders. These findings will inform the quality improvement of our partnership, student’s training and the development of future hospital-based collaborations integrating chiropractic care in a multidisciplinary team in France.

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