Chiropractor Fined $100K for Facebook Posts Questioning Vaccine Safety

CBC News is reporting that a former Halifax-based chiropractor has been ordered to pay her regulator $100,000 as part of a settlement agreement on charges of professional misconduct related to her sharing anti-vaccination views online.

In a decision released publicly Thursday, a hearing committee of the Nova Scotia College of Chiropractors wrote,

Dr. Churchill’s conduct brought the profession of chiropractic into disrepute,

Dr. Churchill has shown no remorse. There is genuine concern that she is ungovernable.” the hearing committee writes in its decision.

The college launched an investigation a year ago after its registrar filed a complaint regarding Churchill’s extensive posts on social media about topics outside her scope of practice, most notably posts about vaccines that made disproved claims.

The guideline from the national chiropractic association, which is observed by the Nova Scotia college, is for chiropractors not to discuss vaccines in any capacity.

The decision noted that at no point has Churchill backed down from her views and that, prior to what has been “a protracted matter,” she was given opportunities to remove the social media posts in question. Churchill did not comply with multiple requests from her registrar to remove offending posts from a variety of social media accounts.

A separate hearing was required after the two sides could not agree on costs, with the college originally seeking the full amount related to the investigation and administrative process to that point, which was $178,831.34. The college later reduced its claim to $100,000.

Churchill immediately took to Facebook with a bold post reaffirming her convictions writing:

“VACCINES ARE DANGEROUS educated people know this if they study the research. “Anti” is a word used to divide the population, I’d encourage you to BE VACCINE INFORMED. Silencing us doctors in any discipline is against the charter of rights and freedoms.”

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