Pertinent Definitions

Profession: An autonomous social group with exclusive knowledge and skills, powers and/or rights, that is regulated, both internally and externally.

Professionalism: The embodiment of the following elements as dictated and regulated by the regulating body: Teaching, Scholarship and Research, Service, Professional Conscience, Competition, Resolution of Differences of Opinion, Professional Evolution and Growth, Demeanor, Quality Improvement, Needs of Underserved Populations, Evidence Informed Practice, Inter and Intra professional interaction, Self-Promotion, Meta-Ethics, Theoretical Normative Ethics, Applied Ethics.

Ethics: The code by which judgements are made. Concerns human conduct, character, and values. It studies the nature of right and wrong and the distinction between good and evil.

Morals: Specific actions and judgements, based on universal standards and altruism.

Values: The regard that something is held to deserve; the importance, worth, or usefulness of something.

Relativism: The doctrine that knowledge, truth, and morality exist in relation to culture, society, or historical context, and are not absolute.

Conscience: As mentioned previously, chiropractic organizations do proffer laudable codes of ethics. However, professionalism as a core educational mission or priority remains underdeveloped in chiropractic. Much of the prevailing organized emphasis associated with chiropractic principles centers on competing preferences for professional identity and political agendas. However, several individual efforts have contributed to a dialogue on professionalism

Power: The autonomy to make independent decisions regarding their own behavior based on their own knowledge

Trust: A privilege received based on the chiropractors professional conduct and ability to put the patient at ease.

Autonomy: Recognizes the right of patients to independent judgments about what happens to them, and to have these choices recognized by the doctor

Beneficence: Requires that the provider do good.

Non-Malfeasance: Recognizes that at the very least the therapy should not cause harm.

Justice: Delineates that patients have the right to be treated fairly and equitably. It involves giving patients the care they need, the care they deserve, and the care to which they are entitled.

Veracity: Means telling the truth and implies respect for patients, for their autonomy, and for their right to make independent decisions.

Confidentiality: The rule of confidentiality requires that all informa- tion about a patient gathered by a practitioner be kept confidential unless its release is authorized by the pa- tient or the patient’s guardian in case of a minor, or is required by law


Fiduciary: Devoting resources to the care of a single patient inevitably diminishes the resources available for other patients. Accountability to patients in the economical and political sense.

Paternalism: Obligates the doctor to mimic decision making of a parent or guardian when the patient does not possess the capacity to do so.

Accountability: Expectation to act in accordance with the general laws of society, and as dictated by the regulating body.

Compassion: Sympathetic pity and concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of others.

Excellence: The quality of being outstanding or extremely good.

Integrity: Maintaining the set of morals and ethics expected by society and the regulating body.

Boundary: The expected and accepted physical, psychologi- cal, and social distances that exist between patients and providers. Ethics, cultural moral norms, and le- gal standards define them.

Transference: The unconscious redirection of feelings from one person to another. OR The redirection to a substitute, usually a therapist, of emotions that were originally felt in childhood (in a phase of analysis called transference neurosis ).

Conflict: A disagreement between two things

Conflict of Interest: a situation in which the concerns or aims of two different parties are incompatible.

Cultural Awareness: The foundation of communication and it involves the ability of standing back from ourselves and becoming aware of our cultural values, beliefs and perceptions.

Cultural Competence: A set of congruent behaviours, attitudes, and policies that come together in a system, agency or among professionals and enable that system, agency or those professions to work effectively in cross-cultural situations.

Cultural Safety: The effective nursing practice of a person or family from another culture that is determined by that person or family.

Cultural Sensitivity: Being aware that cultural differences and similarities between people exist without assigning them a value – positive or negative, better or worse, right or wrong.

Culture: The arts and other manifestations of human intellectual achievement regarded collectively, often distinct based on background and ethnicity.

Diversity: The many dimensions that make people different from others including but not limited to: religion, race, colour, ethnicity. socio-economic circumstance and beliefs.

Ethnicity: The fact or state of belonging to a social group that has a common national or cultural tradition.

Race: Each of the major divisions of humankind, having distinct physical characteristics.

Race Consciousness: Race consciousness is a theory stating that equality under the law is not enough; it rejects the concept that there is a fundamental racial difference between people, but holds that physical features, particularly skin colour, can and do negatively impact some people’s life opportunities.

Self-Awareness: Becoming aware of your own worldview, including learning about your own culture, accepting responsibility and recognizing limits of your competence.

Cash Equity Contribution: Money invested in a practice that comes from or represents the ownership interest

Collateral or security: Assets pledged to support a loan

Depreciation: Amount of value (monetary) that an asset loses over its life

Goodwill: Intangible asset that reflects the excess paid for your practice over its net asset value (the value of your clinic location, your patient files, etc.)

Gross profit margin: Money made after deducting cost of goods or services sold

Interest expense: The cost of your debt (in interest) incurred from taking out a loan with a leasing company or bank

Operating loan: AKA Line of credit, a bank loan used for day-to-day operating expenses

Operating profit: Profit before dividends, income tax, and employee payments

Payables: AKA Accounts payable, money owed by the practice to suppliers

Receivables: AKA Accounts receivable, money owed to the practice by patients and third-party payers

Shareholder’s equity: net assets belonging to the owner of the practice

Term loan: a bank loan that is for a specific period of time, often for the purchase of the practice, equipment, etc.

Assignment of book debts: money generated by patients and insurance companies, in some cases it can include home or stocks/bonds, and third-party guarantors may be required. These would be guarantees from parents, your spouse etc.

Philosophy: The rational investigation of the truths and principles of being, knowledge, or conduct, or a system of principles for guidance in practical affairs.

Heuristics: Not offered as truth, or as hypotheses to be subjected to testing for validity, but as a sort of mental short- hand. A heuristic construct or model helps organize information, and is beneficial to education.

Metaphors: Statements that are not necessarily true, but nonetheless provide a sort of mental shorthand that conveys potentially valuable ideas.

Dogma: A principle or set of principles laid down by an authority as incontrovertibly true.

Principle: A fundamental truth or proposition that serves as the foundation for a system of belief or behaviour or for a chain of reasoning.

Paradigms: A model, or typical example of something.

Ideologies: A system of ideas and ideals.

Beliefs: An acceptance that a statement is true or that something exists.

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