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Registrant Survey 2020

In October 2020, we commissioned a national survey to explore the views of registrants across a range of different areas including qualifications, job satisfaction, clinical practice and the future of the profession. In total, 968 registrants completed the survey.

A series of in-depth interviews was also undertaken following the survey to understand registrants’ perceptions, experiences, and opinions in greater detail.

The research is part of the GCC’s commitment to using evidence and insight to support registrants in their day-to-day work delivering high quality patient care as well as guiding our work as a regulator.

View the full Registrant Survey report: Registrant Survey (2020) 

View the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion report: Registrant Survey (2020) - EDI report

View the Registrant Survey infographic: Registrant Survey Infographic

Past Research

(Executive summary) How is touch communicated in the context of manual therapy? A literature review

How is touch communicated in the context of manual therapy? A literature review

Patient Experience and satisfaction during chiropractic care

The report is the first part of a two-stage GCC research project to better understand chiropractic patient experience and satisfaction nationally and internationally. Co-authors, Professor Dave Newell and Dr Michelle Holmes initially identified over 3,000 documents, refining the search to 43 research articles that fulfilled inclusion and exclusion criteria as based on a preregistered review protocol (Prospero ID: CRD42020203251).   

View the full report, here.


Public perceptions research 
In October 2020 we commissioned a national survey of over 1,000 members of the UK public to explore public perceptions and awareness of chiropractic services. The experiences of 243 patients who have visited a chiropractor for treatment were also surveyed.  
The findings provide many valuable and useful insights that will support registrants in their day-to-day work delivering high quality patient care and help guide our work as a regulator.

View the full report: Public Perceptions Research report (February 2021)



What is important to patients about their care? 

Established in early 2022, the new GCC Patient Community has examined professionalism from the patient perspective and considered if patients’ definition of professionalism match those of registrants and the profession. The report explores specific elements of professionalism, for example the impact on business interests, the consumer vs patient dynamic and the role of clinical expertise.  

There were six main findings: 

1. Patients have a positive experience of chiropractic care and are treated with compassion and respect. They perceive the professionalism of chiropractors to be on par with other healthcare professionals, such as dentists. 

2. Patients frequently associate words such as knowledge, understanding, listening, politeness and respect as defining professionalism. These are fundamental to excellent patient-centred care and a professional healthcare environment. 

3. Views of professionalism are based on the interactions of patients with chiropractors. In contrast, research with GCC registrants revealed professionalism to be more multi-faceted, demonstrating leadership, inter-professional working and professional development as equally important to them. These additional aspects of professionalism are less visible to patients. 

4. Patients recognise the transactional nature of the relationship with most chiropractors. However, most identified themselves as patients rather than customers, although the two perspectives were not thought to be mutually exclusive.  

5. Patients did not spontaneously refer to the need for chiropractors to maintain professionalism outside the workplace. However, they did not condone extreme or illegal behaviours or chiropractors overstepping the boundaries of the patient-professional relationship, including inappropriate use of social media. 

6. Few patients had any knowledge of the GCC but assumed that there was oversight. Confidence in the profession increased when they discovered more about the GCC and its functions. 

Click here to view the full report.

Toolkits covering different aspects of professionalism have been produced following this research: 

Past Research

Patients' Experiences and Expectations of Chiropractic Care (2015)

Research into Patients Views and Expectations of Chiropractic Care; Firefly Final Report (January 2013)

Research into Patients Views and Expectations of Chiropractic Care (2012)

Awareness and perceptions of chiropractors, Ipsos MORI (2009)

Awareness and Perceptions of Chiropractors, MORI (2004)

What We Do

The General Chiropractic Council regulates chiropractors in the UK, Isle of Man and Gibraltar to ensure the safety of patients undergoing chiropractic treatment.

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In this section you can find more about how we work, including information about our structure, governance and how we remain accountable. We also outline how patients and partners can support our work

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This section includes documents summarising the internal procedures and protocols that we use.

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