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Dynamic Chiropractic – September 12, 1995, Vol. 13, Issue 19

Palmer Delegation Meets with Hungarian Health Officials

By Editorial Staff
Back in 1991, "DC" published "Chiropractic's First Steps in Hungary" (see Aug. 2, 1991 issue). The author of that article, Steven Anderson, DC, had done an interview on chiropractic in April 1989 on Hungarian television. While he had a practice in Sweden, he saw the interest in chiropractic by laypeople and the health authorities in Hungary, which prompted him and his father to move to Budapest in 1989.

They opened a clinic in February 1990 in a town an hour's drive from Budapest. In 1990, Dr. Anderson founded the European Chiropractic Foundation, the first chiropractic association in eastern Europe. In February 1991, Dr. Anderson opened another clinic, and had plans for five more.

These pioneering efforts have recently been followed up by a stateside delegation from Palmer College of Chiropractic, in Davenport, Iowa, who recently traveled to Hungary to meet with health care officials. The delegation's goal was to demonstrate chiropractic as a beneficial, cost-effective form of health care.

The members of the delegation were Dr. Garry Krakos, PCC liaison for international affairs; Dr. Henry Mueller, director of the Palmer Chiropractic Walcott Clinic; and two student externs, Don Ledoux and Theresa Van Gessel. They met with the Hungarian Chiropractic Foundation to plan strategies that would influence the direction of proposed health care legislation affecting chiropractic practice in Hungary. Currently, no laws protect chiropractors there, and at the same time, some medical doctors are pushing for chiropractic to be practiced only under their guidance.

"When we began the meetings in Budapest, the Hungarian health officials sat very stoically with their arms crossed," Dr. Krakos reported. "As we presented chiropractic as a natural, conservative and holistic form of health care, they began opening their arms, became animated, started smiling, and asked us questions. By the end of the meetings, they wanted to know what they could do to help promote chiropractic care in Hungary." After the first meeting in Budapest, two of the four health care officials were interested enough to schedule appointments with a local American chiropractor.

With the help of six interpreters, Dr. Meuller and students Don Ledoux and Theresa Van Gessel set up a temporary, free clinic in the city of Tapolca. Tapolca's Mayor Andras Sibak had invited Palmer College to conduct the clinic, and provided complimentary food and lodgings for the delegation. Over 200 patients visited the clinic. The patients were suffering from conditions ranging from diabetes, high-blood pressure, and asthma, to musculoskeletal complaints. According to Don Ledoux, Mayor Sibak has expressed interest in setting up a permanent chiropractic clinic in Tapolca, a city of 18,000 people.

Dr. Krakos said that Palmer College plans to continue working closely with the Hungarian Chiropractic Foundation to help spread the word about chiropractic in their country.

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