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Neck and Back Pain Survey Yields Surprising Results

ChiroCare hired Q Market Research in Eagan, Minnesota, to conduct a survey of Minnesotans who experienced back and neck pain within the past year that had not seen a chiropractor. They surveyed 651 and asked why the respondents did not seek treatment from a chiropractor. Here’s what I have to say about the survey.

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Although most Minnesota health plans cover chiropractic services, 65% of respondents did not know if their health insurance plan does;

  • Although referrals are generally no longer required, 70% were under the impression that they needed a doctor’s referral to see a chiropractor; and
  • Even though the costs of chiropractic care can be as low as $45 per treatment, respondents overestimated the actual cost of chiropractic care by 68%.

The Minnesota Workplace is Greatly Impacted by Back and Neck Pain

Employers will want to pay close attention because of the following results:

  • Respondents who reported they had not sought chiropractic care for their pain were twice as likely to miss work than respondents who had seen a chiropractor.
  • Respondents who reported suffering neck pain were three times more likely to make mistakes at work than those who reported back pain – and fully one in five admitted their pain had caused them to make mistakes at work.
  • Surprisingly, Minnesotans with sedentary jobs are much more likely to experience back/neck pain (28.2 percent of respondents) than those who are employed to perform physical labor (17.8 percent).

Bottom line, many of those untreated pain sufferers admit back and neck pain is causing them to make mistakes at work or miss work altogether. Clearly our current approach is not delivering the necessary care at the right time at the right cost. Minnesota back and neck pain sufferers need to become more familiar with their health benefits and begin seeking chiropractic care as their first-line treatment.  

What are your thoughts regarding how we can help employees and plan members obtain the care they need to improve their quality of life?