Arizona State Board of Chiropractic Examiners

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Table of Contents 

  1. Introduction to this page

  2. Link to home page for Arizona Board of Chiropractic Examiners

  3. Forms and Information needed to stay in compliance with Board's record keeping mandates

  4. Chiropractic Board Will Not Intervene If ASH Denies Needed Care and Patient Welfare and Safety Have Been Put at Risk: Updated 10/01/12

  5. ACS is the only state association that is independent of the Arizona Chiropractic Board

  6. Chiropractic Board removes non-disciplinary orders from the Internet

  7. Arizona Auditor General releases 2010 Performance Audit and Sunset Review, agrees with ACS that broad and open-ended subpoenas (fishing expeditions) with every complaint must end

  8. ACS demands action against current and former Board members for alleged improper disposal of patient medical records

  9. ACS convinces Board to remove "medical necessity" language from final rules

  10. ACS files massive, fully documented complaint against Chiropractic Board with Arizona Ombudsman's Office, response received and rebutted

  11. ACS' effort to ban IME doctors from serving on the Chiropractic Board as reported by The Chiropractic Journal

  12. The legal case of an Arizona chiropractor (Paul W. Pratt, D.C.) who took the Board to court and won with the judge ruling the Board was "excessive, arbitrary and capricious"

  13. Why the Board has the power to discipline your license for any practice contrary to undefined "recognized standards of chiropractic", and how this leaves you vulnerable

  14. Learn about the American College of Chiropractic Consultants (ACCC), their endorsement of the Mercy Guidelines, and who in Arizona is a certified ACCC consultant

  15. Get the full details of the sordid behavior of the Arizona Chiropractic Board by reading all of ACS' complaints filed with the Arizona Ombudsman's Office.

  16. Get another perspective on the Board's misbehavior by reading key ACS newsletter articles from 2006 and 2007

  17. Scroll down to read about just two of the key laws passed by ACS to reform the Board, one to ban Board members from performing IMEs, and the other to allow the Board to send you to class and not discipline your license for minor violations like record keeping errors


1. Introduction to This Page

Beginning in mid-2006, ACS began to get a flood of complaints about the Chiropractic Board acting in an extremely inappropriate manner. ACS investigated thoroughly and found merit to many of the complaints. A campaign was then launched to reform the Board consisting of passing three new laws and a hard-hitting public relations campaign with the ACS newsletters and online. The end result has been complete reform of the Board and elimination of almost all of the inappropriate practices from the past. All of the information about the problems with the Board and ACS' efforts at reform are documented below. ACS' success at Board reform has been one of our greatest accomplishments!

This page provides comprehensive information about the Arizona Chiropractic Board. If you are an Arizona chiropractor and want to keep your license then be sure to read every word. If you are a member of the Executive, Legislative or Judicial branches of Arizona State Government, we ask that you read this information to learn why even more Board reform is needed.

ACS is the profession's watchdog for the Board. This is one of our primary missions. If you want to make sure the chiropractic regulatory agency acts within proper bounds, be sure to join ACS.


2. Arizona Board of Chiropractic Examiners Home Page 

3. Forms and Information Required to Stay Compliant with the Board's Mandates for Record Keeping and Documentation

20 -- Recordkeeping as Mandated by the Arizona Chiropractic Board.pdf:  Detailed instruction complied and updated by ACS over many years.

21 -- Record Keeping and Documentation Course.pdf:  Outline of course given by lead auditor retained by the Arizona Chiropractic Board.

22 -- Record Keeping 2005: Full course notes given by former Board chair. Learn how to find the link to this document on the ACS webpage and how to order a copy from the Chiropractic Board for $12.50. It is too large to be sent as an email.

23 -- Medicare Noridian Chiropractic Coverage and Documentation 2010.pdf

24 -- CMS Rules for reporting timed codes.pdf:  These are the rules for reporting timed codes which you must follow to be in compliance with the requirements of the Arizona Chiropractic Board for all documentation.

24.1 -- Forms:

25 -- Medical Records Protocol 2010.pdf:  Arizona Chiropractic Board requires you have this on file in your office at all times. ACS updates the Protocol whenever the law changes and sends the updated version every year to members

29 -- State Board Investigations and Disciplinary Actions.pdf:  Every doctor with a state license needs to read this background document about boards and discipline. Forewarned is forearmed.


4. Chiropractic Board Decides Not to Intervene if ASH Denies Needed Care and Patient Welfare and Safety Have Been Put at Risk: Updated 10/01/12

           ACS believes that ASH routinely denies medically necessary services such as the full number of spinal manipulations needed, the full amount of physical medicine required, medically necessary x-rays and MRIs on certain patients, and much more. ACS believes these denials by ASH result in harm to public health, welfare and safety. ACS brought this issue to the attention of the Arizona Chiropractic Board and asked if the Board might have the authority to get involved. Here is part of the Board’s response. The full letter from the Board is posted here.

          "However, the Board noted that if practitioners can produce documentation of specific incidences when a patient's welfare and safety has been put at risk or patient harm has occurred due to the screening practices, it could review that documentation to determine if there are any actions under its jurisdiction that could be taken.”

           The “screening practices” referred to are screening for clinical necessity according to the Board’s letter. This means that if ASH “screens” your patient’s care and denies x-rays or treatment and you believe that as a result of the denial “your patient’s welfare and safety has been put at risk or patient harm has occurred,” you should immediately file a complaint against ASH with the Arizona Chiropractic Board. Be sure to print out and attach a copy of the Board’s letter from the ACS webpage.

            UPDATE 10/01/12:: The Board has reversed its position and decided NOT to intervene if a doctor has a complaint regarding ASH practices. Therefore, even if, using the Board's words, "practitioners can produce documentation of specific incidences when a patient's welfare and safety has been put at risk or patient harm has occurred . . .," the Board will not even investgate ASH, not to mention take disciplinary action. The Board, once again, has proven itself a friend of the insurance industry, not the chiropractic profession.


 5. ACS is the Only State Association that is Independent of the Arizona Chiropractic Board

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ACS is the only state association that is independent from the Board. The AAC and the Board are "joined at the hip." Click here to read the full ACS statement on this important matter.


6. Chiropractic Board Removes Non-Disciplinary Orders from Internet

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The Arizona Chiropractic Board has now removed all notices of non-disciplinary actions from the Internet. This was completed well before the deadline of 2012. This Board action comes as a great relief to those whose reputations were besmirched by the language of the non-disciplinary orders which were indistinguishable from disciplinary orders in many cases to the eye of the layman. On behalf of the profession, ACS thanks the Board for moving quickly with this project. 


7. Arizona Auditor General Releases 2010 Performance Audit and Sunset Review


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The Auditor General has condemned broad and open-ended subpoenas issued by the Chiropractic Board in every case, called "fishing expeditions" by ACS. Here is the language from the full report which you can read by clicking here. This issue was brought to the attention of the Auditor General by ACS members who sent in letters in coordination with ACS. Click here to read a summary of the opinion regarding fishing expeditions, and to read about ACS' position paper and campaign opposed to this improper practice.


8. ACS Demands Action Against Current and Former Board Members for Alleged Improper Disposal of Patient Records 

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Hundreds of patient records allegedly recovered from the outside trash of current and former Board members Drs. Dianne Haydon, Steve Baker and Craig Seitz were turned into the Arizona Chiropractic Board a few years ago with complaints alleging failure to properly dispose of records. The Board dismissed the complaints filed against its own members solely because the "dumpster diver(s)" chose to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation. It was obvious to most that the records could not have arrived at the Board office unless the doctors failed to properly control and protect their own patient records.

After the Board dismissed the complaints, ACS was anonymously supplied with copies of the medical records in a redacted form. Click here to read the documents which the Board dismissed: Haydon Records Baker Records V. One Baker Records V. Two Baker Records V. Three Seitz Records V. One Seitz Records V. Two Introductory Letters and decide for yourself if the dismissals were fair.

ACS demands that the same standard of justice be applied to Drs. Haydon, Baker and Seitz as they have applied to all other chiropractors in Arizona. This requires immediate scheduling of all of these complaints for formal consideration by the Board. Justice delayed is justice denied.


9. Arizona Chiropractic Board Proposes Final New Rules without Objectionable "Medical Necessity" Language

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  The Arizona Chiropractic Board on August 10, 2007 published its new proposed rules in the Arizona Revised Register. The proposed rules no longer contained any reference to “medical necessity”, or to undefined “accepted clinical standards of care”. This is a great victory for the chiropractic profession in Arizona, and is the direct result of the many letters and emails sent by ACS, ACS members and the ICA to the Chiropractic Board which expressed serious objections to the first draft of the rules. See the ICA's letter here: full text in PDF format . The final rules have been published and are posted on the Board's homepage.


10. ACS Files Massive Complaint Against Chiropractic Board with Arizona Ombudsman-Citizen's Aide

Inadequate response received and rebutted by ACS

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ACS presents three must-read documents for every Arizona chiropractor.

In July 2006 ACS filed a massive massive complaint with the Arizona Ombudsman's Office against the Chiropractic Board. On Feb. 8, 2008, the Ombudsman's office issued a issued a report in response. Four of the six ACS allegations were not investigated. The remaining two were found to be unsubstantiated. ACS then issued a statement strongly objecting to this conclusion and report. Read the ACS statement by clicking here.


11. The Chiropractic Journal Reports About ACS Legislative Efforts to Ban IME Doctors from Arizona Chiropractic Board

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ACS was successful in passing legislation to ban Board members from performing IMEs for insurance companies like State Farm while they were on the Board. One Board member had been actively performing IMEs and then voting on discipline based on complaints filed by the same insurance companies paying him for IMEs. The Legislature quickly perceived the conflict of interest and banned the practice. Here is how The Chiropractic Journal reported the story:

"Arizona bars IMEs from Board" The Chiropractic Journal, March, 2007

"Can Board Members Serve Two Masters?" The Chiropractic Journal, March, 2007


12. Paul W. Pratt, D.C. v. AZ Board of Chiropractic Examiners


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It is very rare for any doctor to challenge the Board's discipllinary action in court due to the enormous expense involved. One doctor, Paul Pratt, DC, did take the Board to Court. The Judge overturned almost all of the Board's discipline and stated that the Board's actions were "excessive, arbitrary and capricious." This is exactly what ACS has been saying for years only now it has come from a neutral Pima County Superior Court Judge. Read the entire story and the legal documents by clicking here.



 13. Board's Power and Scope Greatly Expanded in 1995


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Prior to 1995, the law only gave the Chiropractic Board the power to discipline your license if you practiced contrary to recognized standards of ethics in chiropractic. In 1995, the Chiropractic Board and the AAC, lead by Drs. Terry Petersen and Arlan Fuhr, championed the law which now requires DCs to take 12 hours of CE per year. Unknown to almost all at the time, the law also removed the words "of ethics" thus allowing the Board now to discipline your license if you practice contrary to recognized standards in chiropractic. The Board now examines every clinical aspect of your practice based on this single 1995 change. Click here to read the full story.



14. Former Board Chair Haydon and Former Vice-Chair Baker Members of American College of Chiropractic Consultants Which Endorses Mercy Guidelines

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Former Board Chair Haydon and Former Vice-Chair Baker are members of the American College of Chiropractic Consultants (ACCC), the premier organization which certifies DCs to review claims and perform IMEs for insurance companies. ACCC endorses the Mercy Guidelines. Read the ACCC site on the Internet. Both Drs. Haydon and Baker were nominated to the Board by the AAC, and are members of the AAC, not ACS.



15. Complaints Filed by ACS Against the Chiropractic Board with the Arizona Ombudsman's Office

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The Arizona Chiropractic Society has filed numerous complaints with the Ombudsman's Office regarding the Arizona State Board of Chiropractic Examiners. The Ombudsman's Office has never taken any effective action to address any of ACS' concerns. These complaints spell out in great detail the abuses committed by the Chiropractic Board. Click here to open a new page with all of the complaints.



16. Arizona Chiropractic Society 2006-2007 Newsletters Pertaining to Chiropractic Board


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Click here to go to the 2006-2007 ACS newsletters that started the entire Chiropractic Board reform campaign including passage of numerous new laws. ACS continues to report on Board activities in every monthly newsletter. To follow the developments, go the the ACS Monthly Newsletter page.



17. Key Laws Passed by ACS to Reform the Arizona Chiropractic Board

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2006 Law Prohibiting Board Members from Performing IMEs: After veteran IME doctors were appointed to the Board in 2003 and 2004, ACS passed legislation in 2006 which states: "A board member shall not receive compensation as an agent or employee of or a contractor for an insurance company." Eighty percent of the Board complaints against DCs were then being filed by insurance companies and heard by their virtual employees serving as Board members. ACS stepped in and stopped the abuse with a new law.


2007 Law Allowing Board To Order CE Courses Without Discipline: Professions: This new law gives the Chiropractic Board the option of ordering DCs to take continuing education courses for minor violations instead of disciplining a professional license. For example, if a doctor has been found in violation of the record keeping rules, the Board is now able to order course work instead of imposing discipline. Scores of doctors have avoided disciplinary black marks on their records as result of passage of this law.