Chiropractors Respond to Crisis

On August 29, 2005, Hurricane Katrina came ashore on the US Gulf Coast and created a path of death, devastation and destruction that's unprecedented in recent US history. Government emergency services and several other relief workers have started the long job of rescue relief and restoration. People all across the United States and also the world have offered help and also have shown overwhelming generosity toward those areas the ones impacted by the devastation.

Responding to this tragedy, many chiropractors have started establishing facilities to assist people who were displaced from this event, in addition to people who will probably be active in the massive aftermath and cleanup. This scene is strikingly similar to post 9-11 efforts, when the chiropractic profession responded by establishing free clinics at the Pentagon and Ground Zero to provide care to those workers who had been associated with the huge cleanup. This is just the beginning of what's going to be a continuing and growing chiropractic relief effort at this center, and more ahead. At this one center alone, nine Doctors of Chiropractic have initially volunteered their time to help those suffering from the storm. Dr. Butch Sonnier, was among a team of chiropractors who put in place mobile chiropractic aid stations in and around New Orleans. He reported, "We loaded up then traveled to the city of New Orleans where we set up shop at a number of staging areas for various law enforcement groups which were working the area and adjusted hundreds of more. Once we were beyond the checkpoints and in the location, it appeared to be scenes coming from a Hollywood disaster film. As soon as we were out of the New Orleans area, we estimated that we gave approximately 1000 adjustments to refugees, guardsmen and police force people in one and one half days. The docs from Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Louisiana really represented our profession with passion, love and devotion. Within the short couple of days we had been there, nobody requested our credentials, malpractice papers or gave us a difficult time. We were welcomed with open arms and thanked profusely for our efforts. Out of the 1000 or so adjustments given, we estimated that approximately 80% were first-time adjustments! Once more, thanks for the prayers and well wishes." Chiropractic's big benefit at these facilities is to help those who were either displaced or that are active in the massive cleanup. "Those impacted by this crisis are under extreme physical and emotional stress," said Dr. John Maltby, President of the International Chiropractors Association, (ICA). "Chiropractic care helps these people function as best they can under these extreme circumstances." He continued, "We (the ICA and local chiropractic groups) are working to expand the number and outreach of these chiropractic aid facilities throughout the stricken areas."

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