Last Wednesday, my husband, mother and I reported dutifully back to Chiro One to be coerced into giving them all our money get our health reports. In a group setting. Where we instructed to bring our spouses and a big fat check.
We were greeted enthusiastically again, and our names were up on the white board once more. We received name tags and were encouraged to make friends with the other folks that were waiting to receive THEIR health reports. We spent most of our time debating which Hall & Oates song is their best instead (it's Rich Girl. It's TOTALLY Rich Girl). Eventually everyone arrived and we were ushered into the main treatment area, where a small grouping of chairs were arranged in a semi-circle around a whiteboard with some writing on it. The doctor, the same one who had helped examine my mother and I on our previous visit, gave the 8 of us a presentation about spinal health and how we were going to die if we didn't receive chiropractic treatment for the rest of our life. Seriously. It took her about half an hour to go through the whole presentation, and it was very interactive (she called on us frequently, asked us lots of questions, and she kept calling my husband out on his snarky whispered comments to me), but this is what I took away from the presentation:
|From this site.|
2) Getting the proper chiropractic treatment, for the rest of our lives, will take us out of the cycle of "medications and surgery" that the rest of the health world wants us to be in, will fix the dysfunctions (which can take YEARS of treatment, if our backs are bad enough) and keep us healthy and happy.
3) Seeing other chiropractors will only mess up our backs further. This was illustrated by showing us xrays of a man who had been seeing a chiropractor on his own for 15 years before coming to Chiro One. I'm not sure how they GOT his 15 year old x rays, but they showed us what were supposedly his xrays before he started treatment with his previous chiropractor (bad), his xrays from near the end of his treatment with that chiro (worse), and his xrays when he came to Chiro One (so bad they needed to refer him for surgery, they couldn't even help this poor soul, his other chiropractor had worsened him so!).
|you ever see the results of a neglected mouth?! THIS COULD HAPPEN TO YOU!|
Toward the end of the presentation, my mom asked about genetics. Something like "do you really believe that subluxations cause ALL diseases and disorders in the body? What about genetic factors and predisposition to certain conditions?" To which the doctor replied that she DOES believe subluxations cause all of our bad medical stuff and that she doesn't believe genetics play a part in it at all. Because she had scoliosis and severe depression and some other things, and as soon as she started receiving regular chiropractic care at Chiro One, all of that was cured and she's a True Believer now. My mother mentioned Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and how, when she was diagnosed with cancer, she said something like "I don't understand how this could have happened, I've always lived such a healthy life." The doctor replied "was she getting chiropractic treatment? Because I would bet you that no, she was not."
DO YOU HEAR THAT, JACKIE O? IF YOU'D SEEN A CHIROPRACTOR REGULARLY, YOU WOULD NEVER HAVE DIED OF CANCER!
So. Make of that what you will. Obviously we're in the 'skeptic' category.
Shortly thereafter, they took us back into the private rooms to discuss our personal health details. A blond doctor took my mom back, and the same doctor who gave the presentation took OJ and I back into a room. She showed us our back xrays (both of us having some decent misalignments, of course) and noted that it would probably take several years to treat us. She showed us the treatment plan and paperwork she'd written up on us and said they wanted to start out seeing us three times a week for 3 months.
Here's the kicker. They want you to pay up front. That's the big sale. You have to COMMIT. Oh sure, if you decide you don't like the treatments or want to go somewhere else, they'll return a prorated amount to you, but they won't treat you unless you pay for a big block up front.
For the two of us, that meant $1800. $900 a piece ($25 copay each visit for 12 weeks times 2 people). And of course they had three easy payment options!
Oh, and the orthotics for our feet. Those weren't covered by our insurance. So add another $400 a piece to our cost, because we really SHOULD have orthotics, you know.
We thanked her and respectfully declined. We both believe in chiropractic care (though perhaps not quite to the somewhat fanatical level that these people profess to believe), but we don't believe in paying up front for 12 weeks of medical services at a place we might not even like, for treatments we might not even need.We'll go to my husband's previous chiro instead, where they do much the same stuff but in a private setting and don't charge you an arm and a leg or tell you you need to see them three times a week for the rest of FOREVER or you'll get cancer and DIE.
After we regrouped with my mom, she told us that her doctor wouldn't even TELL her the cost of the treatment plan for her until she agreed to commit to the recommended course of treatment! (Which was also three times a week for 12 weeks.) So she doesn't even know what they were going to try to charge her. They also tried to sell her orthotics, and when my mom told the doctor she already HAS a pair of orthotics from her podiatrist, the chiropractor told her "well, we want you to have the SOFT ones".
Needless to say, my mom didn't give Chiro One any of her hard-earned dollars either.
|don't be fooled! "free" medical care is generally NOT.|
My take? The word "scam" is relative; they ARE charging for a service and they do provide said service, and it may even have health benefits for you. But it's definitely a BUSINESS first, caring health company second. It's full of manipulative sales techniques and methods used to get you emotionally involved and committed. I would recommend that anyone considering chiropractic care steer clear of Chiro One and find a reputable local chiropractor in their area instead.
part one of this series:
Is Chiro One A Scam?