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Legislative and regulatory status

It is one of the ECU’s primary objectives to promote the statutory regulation of chiropractors throughout Europe. Currently, chiropractic is regulated in 20 European nations, either through specific legislation or through general law. However, there are five countries where its legal status remains unclear. This inequality creates issues for both patients and practising chiropractors.

The ECU supports the view that all European citizens seeking musculoskeletal healthcare in the form of chiropractic have the right to protection by statutory legislation. Such legislation should provide provision for the establishing of a register of authorised practitioners, protection of title, fitness to practise procedures, educational standards, and standards of conduct and proficiency.

In those countries that benefit from dedicated legislation, there is statutory registration and protection of title. This protects patients and assures the public that those using the title of chiropractor satisfy specific standards of competence and education.

For those countries seeking legislation, the CEN Standard for Healthcare Provision by Chiropractors provides a template. In addition, the existence of Masters level programmes of study, offered by educational institutions accredited by the European Council on Chiropractic Education, provides an assurance to national health authorities that chiropractic is a distinct healthcare profession which is both structured and of high quality.