The Hellenic Chiropractors' Association
The Hellenic Chiropractors’ Association, founded in 1995, is the official, professional, corporate and scientific body of Chiropractic in Greece. It is an active member of the European Chiropractors’ Union (ECU) and the World Federation of Chiropractic (WFC), which since 1997 is officially related to the World Health Organization (WHO)
As a scientific, non profit-making organization, it is governed by the existing laws of the state, run by its General Assembly, while it has legally elected bodies:
The Executive Council, the Scientific Committee and the Disciplinary Committee.
Its members are classified as Honorary, Full, Probationary, Associate and Non-Active.
Only those who hold a Chiropractic degree from an institute recognized by the International or European Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE), can become members, and are subjected to an annual vocational training, the Graduate Education Programme, organized by the association.
The Aims of the Association
The main aims of the association are:
- To establish and promote Chiropractic in Greece
- Its legislation
- To represent and vindicate Greek Chiropractors’ rights at a Greek and European level
- To regulate the practice of Chiropractic in Greece, in a way similar to the other European countries
- To create recognized full-time undergraduate education programs, as well as continuing education programs in Greece
The Associations' History
The first Chiropractor came to Greece during the first decades of 1900. His name was Kleanthis Lygiros and he was a student of the father of modern Chiropractic, D.D. Palmer. It is said that, because of his Greek origin, he was the one who gave D.D. Palmer the idea to name “Chiropractic” the science he created. There are few Greek Chiropractors who were known until the creation of the association. One of them was Theodore Moutsios, father of the famous actor George Moutsios.
Despite the fact that the Association was officially established in 1995, it had been organized since 1977 as a member of the united Hellenic Naturopathy, Chiropractic and Osteopathy Practitioners’ Association. That Association was a result of the personal efforts of a dear departed Chiropractor, Dimitrios Chronis, and his cooperation with Socrates Christodoularis and Panayiotis Koumentaris, well known for their excellent work in Osteopathy and Naturopathy. Together with the younger Chiropractors, Osteopaths and Naturopaths, they created that first association, which for over 20 years set up these disciplines in Greece and gave legal battles for their recognition, during a period when alternative therapies were almost unknown in Greece. The highlight of those efforts was a decision reached by the Council of State in 1989, after Eleni Skarpathaki’s appeal. Following from that decision, Chiropractors have the legal right to practice their profession in Greece. That early association, led by Socrates Christodoularis, joined the European Chiropractors’ Union, in 1985, and became a founding member of the newly formed World Federation of Chiropractic.
In 1994, the association had enough members to gain its own independent stature, which was completed in 1995 under the personal efforts of Eleni Skarpathaki and Vassilis Maltezopoulos. Since then, the association developed multi-level activity in promoting Chiropractic, through publications in the press and appearances in television informative shows, in representing Greece in the European Chiropractors’ Union, through which it contributed in the formulation of common parameters in practicing Chiropractic in Europe. One of the association’s top moments was organizing the annual European Chiropractic Convention, that took place in June 2000, in the “Apollon Divani” hotel, in Kavouri, with the participation of 200 Chiropractors from many European countries, under the personal care and attention of Vassilis Maltezopoulos, who was the association president at the time. The association is looking forward to repeating such a project again in 2015, at a time when the participation of Chiropractors is expected to be much greater, perhaps even more than 1000.
The enrollment of new Chiropractors into the association has risen significantly in the last few years, yet the number of full members remains low, due to retirement of some of the older ones. Today, president of the association is Dr. Vassilis Golfinopoulos, already in his third term. During his duty, the statute has been revised, new regulations and a Code of Ethics have been created. Dr. Golfinopoulos’ ambitions to climb up the hierarchy ladder of the European Chiropractors Union as its treasurer have materialized during the recent elections that took place in May 2010.