Did you know that Dr. Pat’s family has a direct connection to the preservation of the chiropractic profession? In the late seventies and throughout the eighties, the McAndrews brothers–Dr. Jerome F. McAndrews and George P. McAndrews–fought a “David vs. Goliath” battle for the right of chiropractic to exist in America.
The story starts close to home, too–right downtown in the great city of Chicago.
Jerry and George’s dad Patrick and sister Virginia were both chiropractors. Jerry was a second generation chiropractor and served as the President of Palmer College of Chiropractic in the eighties. Jerry’s son Patrick (that’s Dr. Pat and third generation!) and George’s daughter Mary followed in their chiropractic footsteps. So when a disgruntled employee of the American Medical Association came to them describing many of the activities of the AMA’s “Committee on Quackery,” the brothers took notice and knew they had to take action. The AMA had a fully-staffed and fully-funded “Committee on Quackery” whose sole purpose was the isolation and elimination of the profession of chiropractic. Many of the activities they were doing were unethical at best and likely illegal.
George, had graduated first in his class from Notre Dame Law School and was working in a firm specializing in protecting intellectual property and/or the rules of competition in the marketplace, took the legal lead. Jerry raised funds, gathered information, and gathered a group of chiropractors to be plaintiffs. Together they initiated a lawsuit against the AMA, the most powerful medical trade association in the world.
To make a long story short, David and Goliath faced-off in the First District Court of Chicago. George and his secretary sitting by themselves against twenty-seven lawyers (Yes, 27!) for the defense–representing defendants such as the AMA, The Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Hospitals, The American Hospital Association, The American College of Surgeons, and 1900 local medical societies who had all signed on to this mission to rid the world of this competitor for their healthcare dollars: chiropractic.
Not only did George McAndrews win the case, but when the AMA appealed and lost, they were slapped with a permanent federal injunction forbidding them from engaging in this type of illegal activity against chiropractic for all eternity.
Every profession needs competition to stay healthy, but like every game, some rules are necessary to keep it fair and fun. Chiropractic has gone on to prove that it is an asset to the health of the nation and even the world, which for us starts right here in Naperville, IL at Advanced Health of Naperville. We literally see miracles happen at our office every day and we have Dr. Pat’s family to thank for a part of that!