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About chiropractors

Chiropractors are regulated health professionals who are musculoskeletal experts, providing assessment, diagnosis, treatment and preventive care of biomechanical disorders originating from the muscular, skeletal and nervous systems. Chiropractors work mostly in private practices.i 

Data availability

CIHI’s Health Workforce Database (HWDB) collects aggregate-level, standardized data on the regulatory environment, supply, and demographic and education characteristics of chiropractors in Canada.

Reports and analyses

Regulatory environment

In Canada, chiropractors are regulated in all provinces and Yukon (as of 2015). 

Practice criteria

To practise as a chiropractor in Canada, an individual must obtain a licence from one of the chiropractic regulatory authorities/ministries in Canada. The requirements to obtain a licence are similar across the country but can vary slightly from one jurisdiction to another.

Common requirements

  • Hold a doctor of chiropractic (DC) degree from an accredited program
  • Pass the Canadian Chiropractors Examining Board National Competency Examination
  • Register with a provincial/territorial regulatory body as required

Scope of practiceii

The scope of practice for chiropractors is articulated in provincial/territorial regulatory legislation, which outlines the range of responsibilities that define the boundaries of professional practice.

Chiropractors are highly trained professionals who help individuals with the assessment of conditions related to the spine, nervous system and joints, as well as diagnosis, prevention and treatment. Some of their main functions include

  • Communicating a diagnosis
  • Identifying the cause of a person’s symptoms
  • Providing therapeutic treatment for dysfunctions or disorders arising from the structures or functions of the spine and joints and the effects of those dysfunctions or disorders on the nervous system

i. Canadian Chiropractic Association. Canadian chiropractors. Accessed April 6, 2016. 
ii. College of Chiropractors of Ontario. Chiropractic Scope of Practice. 2011.