Experiences With Chiropractic Care for Patients With Low Back or Neck Pain

Published in: Journal of Patient Experience (2019). doi: 10.1177%2F2374373519846022

Posted on RAND.org on June 10, 2019

by Ron D. Hays, Cathy D. Sherbourne, Karen Spritzer, Lara Hilton, Gery W. Ryan, Ian D. Coulter, Patricia M. Herman

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Background

Musculoskeletal disorders are the second leading cause of disability worldwide.

Objective

Examine experiences of chiropractic patients in the United States with chronic low back or neck pain.

Method

Observational study of 1853 chronic low back pain and neck pain patients (74% female) who completed an online questionnaire at the 3-month follow-up that included Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) items assessing their experiences with care.

Results

We found similar reports of communication for the chiropractic sample and patients in the 2016 CAHPS National Database, but 85% in the database versus 79% in the chiropractic sample gave the most positive response to the time spent with provider item. More patients in the CAHPS database rated their provider at the top of the scale (8 percentage points). More chiropractic patients reported always getting answers to questions the same day (16 percentage points) and always being seen within 15 minutes of their appointment time (29 percentage points).

Conclusions

The positive experiences of patients with chronic back and neck pain are supportive of their use of chiropractic care.

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