Image of quote from James Leonard

Introducing: World Spine Care Clinical Supervisor, Dr. James Leonard

Image of quote from James Leonard

James joined the World Spine Care clinic in Moca, Dominican Republic, in March 2020.

WSC: Welcome James! Tell us, how did you first come to learn about World Spine Care?

It’s a pleasure to be the latest World Spine Care Clinical Supervisor. I first became interested in World Spine Care while listening to an interview with Dr. Haldeman and Dean Smith on the Chiropractic Science podcast. During this interview they discussed the global burden of spine related disorders, the need and lack of evidence-based conservative care in impoverished populations, and what WSC was doing to address this gap. I then began to dig deeper into the organization and its research efforts and was impressed with the quality of the work and dream-team of individuals who had all been involved with these projects. 

One of the main reasons I became passionate about chiropractic was because of how effective providers can be at triaging patients and managing spine related disorders. This is largely accomplished because of the pragmatism of our interventions. We guide patients through care by beginning with the least invasive means possible and then work them up the chain as necessary. Since most spine related disorders never require an escalation of care, it makes so much sense to apply this principle to populations that don’t have access or can’t afford more invasive interventions. 

The opportunity to provide high quality care to a population who really needs it while being involved with a project that is making a difference globally was a wonderful push to make the leap and jump into a Clinic Supervisor role.

Portrait of Dr. James Leonard
Dr. James Leonard, Clinical Supervisor, Moca, Dominican Republic

WSC: What about this role are you most excited about?

I’m really excited about managing patients in a different social context. In America, we sometimes get so caught up in the business and growth side of chiropractic, we fail to see the patient that’s right in front of us. It’s really awesome to be operating in a role where each interaction is all about using whatever tools you have to make a difference in the life of the person in front of you. I am hoping that during my time here I can have a sustainable effect in lives of those I work with. 

WSC: What are you hoping to learn?

The primary focus of the moment is learning Spanish on-the-fly. It’s amazing how much can be accomplished through gestures. Luckily, spine pain is spine pain and most of it loves to move. The trick is going to be digging deeper into the social context of these conditions in order to provide more effective rehabs. Thus far I have been blown away by the kindness, warmth, and welcoming nature of everyone I’ve interacted with. 

WSC: What are you passionate about?

I’m mostly passionate about spines, which makes me a less than desirable dinner guest at times. But I also really enjoy adventure/endurance sports, stringed instruments, and personal development. 

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