Dr. Iain Harrington is a chiropractor at the Yellow Cedar Integrated Wellness Clinic in Campbell River.

Standardized pathway in spine care adjusts ‘supermarket approach’

Disability due to back pain has increased by more than 50 per cent over the last 25 years and low back pain is now the number one leading cause of disability worldwide. At the same time, the costs of treating people suffering from back pain are surging.

According to Dr. Iain Harrington of the Yellow Cedar Integrated Wellness Clinic, Canada spends between $8 and $12 billion to care for people with spine-related disability every year.

“We’re actually in a spinal pain epidemic in Canada and globally,” Harrington said.

The Campbell River-based Doctor of Chiropractic said one of the problems underlying the epidemic is the prevailing “supermarket approach” to delivering spine care.

“There are dozens of different pharmaceutical products that people can take for back pain,” he said. “There are injections, surgical procedures, and countless health-care professionals who are treating back pain despite not being informed by best practices.

“One patient can see nine practitioners and receive nine different diagnoses for the same problem – it’s a fragmented, inefficient system.”

A standardized pathway in spine care

The solution isn’t necessarily having just one doctor, Harrington said, but having a doctor who is open to communicating with other health-care practitioners who respect clinical guidelines.

At his practice, he provides patient-centered care by listening to his patients, informing them of evidence-based treatment options such as prescribed exercise and manual therapy, and involving them in decision-making.

“If a patient wants to combine chiropractic care with seeing a naturopath for lifestyle management, an acupuncturist or a therapist who can help with psychological factors often associated with spine pain, I’m keen to support that,” he said.

Rather than operating in a “chiropractic silo,” he works to ensure all practitioners involved in his patients’ recovery processes are on the same page. For example, he provides the family physician of every patient he sees with a shared plan of management.

“Communication is massive,” he said, adding that he monitors his patients’ outcomes throughout their entire recovery process.

“Acting as a first contact for people suffering from spine pain ensures a patient-centered, standardized pathway of care from when they enter the health-care system to them recovering.”

Changing how spine care is delivered, he added, can help achieve triple-aim goals of improved care, improve patient outcomes and reduced costs.

To learn more, visit yellowcedarintegrated.com.

Just Posted

Some members of city council say the current plan for rebuilding the library isn’t in the community’s best interest, but the majority of council say it should go forward as is, so the motion to reexamine it was defeated. File photo/Campbell River Mirror
Re-examination of plan for new Campbell River library narrowly voted down by council

‘I haven’t heard one argument that does make sense for why that has to be the location’

A welcoming ceremony was held at the meeting of the SRD board April 14, where gifts were exchanged between KCFN Director Kevin Jules (left) and SRD Chair Brad Unger (right) to mark the historic occasion. Photo Submitted
KCFN officially joins SRD as full member

‘For KCFN, this has been a long journey and a long time coming’ says SRD board member Kevin Jules

Fish processing workers fillet farm-raised salmon in Surrey B.C. Photo courtesy BCSFA
Discovery Islands salmon farm removal impacts jobs in B.C.’s Lower Mainland: report

The City of Surrey is the hub of the salmon farming industry in Metro Vancouver

Island Heath has issued an overdose advisory for Campbell River. If someone has overdosed, administering naloxone can help. File photo
Overdose advisory issued for Campbell River

People using drugs advised to protect themselves

Photo collage of loved ones lost to substance use and overdose. (Photo courtesy Moms Stop The Harm)
B.C. overdose deaths still rising 5 years after public health emergency declared

Moms Stop the Harm calls on B.C. to provide safe supply in response to deadly illicit drug use

Demonstrators at the legislature on April 14 called on the province to decriminalize drug possession and provide widespread access to regulated safe supply across B.C. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)
Rally calls for decriminalization, safe supply on 5th anniversay of overdose emergency declaration

From 2016 to the end of February, 7,072 British Columbians died due to overdose

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Feb. 1, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps to 1,168 Wednesday, nearly 400 in hospital

Now 120 coronavirus patients in intensive care, six more deaths

Moss covered branches are seen in the Avatar Old Growth Forest near Port Renfrew on Vancouver Island, B.C. Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. blockades aimed at protecting old-growth forests reveal First Nation split

Two Pacheedaht chiefs say they’re ‘concerned about the increasing polarization over forestry activities’ in the territory

Richmond RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng said, in March, the force received a stand-out number of seven reports of incidents that appeared to have “racial undertones.” (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
‘Racially motivated’ incidents on the rise in B.C’s 4th largest city: police

Three incidents in Richmond are currently being invested as hate crimes, says RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng

Commercial trucks head south towards the Pacific Highway border crossing Wednesday (April 14, 2021). The union representing Canadian border officers wants its members to be included on the frontline priority list for the COVID-19 vaccine. (Aaron Hinks photo)
CBSA officers’ union calls for vaccine priority in B.C.

Border officers at ports including, YVR and land crossings should ‘not be left behind’

(Amandalina Letterio - Capital News)
Kelowna demonstrators show support for Vancouver Island logging activists

Two Kelowna men stood atop a pedestrian bridge on Harvey Avenue to raise awareness about old-growth forests

City workers from Duncan were busy recently putting up street signs in both Hul’q’umi’num’ and English. (Submitted photo)
Hul’q’umi’num street signs installed in downtown Duncan

Partnership with Cowichan Tribes sees English street names twinned with Indigenous language

Most Read