Texas Court of Appeals Strikes Devastating Blow to Texas Board & TCA – Nervous System Not Within Scope

News Analysis
Texas Court of Appeals Strikes Devastating Blow to Texas Board & TCA – Nervous System Not Within Scope

Diagnosis Remains But Limited to Biomechanics 

In a sharp rebuke to the years long battle for the Texas Board of Chiropractic (TBCE) to expand the scope of practice in that state, the Texas Medical Association (TMA) can claim victory. The Texas Court of Appeals for the Third District ruled against the TBCE on the appeal of the crucial issue of whether or not the scope of practice of chiropractic includes the nervous system.   

CLICK HERE for a copy of the decision

The Court did find for the TBCE in regards to the issue of diagnosis but limited that scope to diagnosis of "biomechanics" as described in the statute. 

SEE HERE for the history of the TBCE follies

Despite the ranting and raving of the TBCE, the TCA, ACA, and Parker University to raise money for this lawsuit, this was never about vertebral subluxation and there was no issue in Texas until the TBCE set about on a series of efforts to expand the scope of chiropractic practice in the state by going around the legislature and adopting Rules that they believed would effectively expand the scope. 

Those efforts failed when the TMA stepped in and put a stop to it and in so doing legally unraveled the basic underlying theory of chiropractic. 

The TCA, ACA, Parker University and the TBCE have attempted to blame these issues on the Texas Medical Association and frame the issues as if the TMA has been out to get the chiropractic profession in Texas for 100 years. In reality, the TMA was minding its own business as the TCA and the Texas Board of Chiropractic attempted to expand the scope of practice to infringe on the practice of medicine by instituting a series of rules changes instead of going through the legislature. After several instances of this the TMA stepped in, sued the TBCE and won. 

The court basically declared their rule changes invalid since they exceed the scope of the statute. Then the TCA and TBCE began to spread fear into the minds of chiropractors telling them to join the TCA and ACA and donate money for the lawsuit or they would no longer be able to diagnose anything or manage subluxations in Texas. 

Experts for the TBCE failed to convince the Court that the nervous system was part of the musculoskeletal system or that the scope needed to include the nervous system because the “subluxation complex” inherently includes nerves.     

The bottom line rests on the pain language of the statute where the scope explicitly states “biomechanics” with no mention of the nervous system. 

Texas has become the poster child in chiropractic for what can happen when rogue boards and their individual board members attempt to expand the scope of chiropractic practice beyond the analysis and correction of subluxation by using their ability to adopt rules. 

The problem, as the battle in Texas illustrates, is that they may not go beyond the statute when adopting rules. 


McCoy Press