NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates Fact Sheet

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Introduction:

The National Certification Commission of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM®) has launched a NEW membership organization, the NCCAOM® Academy of Diplomates (Academy), a separate chartered division of the NCCAOM to increase promotion and advancement of NCCAOM Diplomates and the NCCAOM credentials.

This new, nonprofit, membership organization is in direct response to the NCCAOM Board of Commissioners’ request for the national certification organization to expand its services to meet the duality of its mission: to assure the safety and well-being of the public and to advance the professional practice of acupuncture and Oriental medicine (AOM).

The NCCAOM has developed a list of frequently asked questions, below, to provide our Diplomates with information about the newly formed Academy and to answer any commonly asked questions. We will be updating this document periodically with the latest information about the Academy. Questions or comments related to this fact sheet should be directed to academy@thenccaom.org.

Q. (1). Why did NCCAOM create NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates?

A. (1). A monumental milestone for the NCCAOM occurred in February 2016 when the NCCAOM Board of Commissioners approved a motion to create a separate chartered division titled “NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates” whose purpose is to further focus on supporting Diplomates in their careers as defined by the NCCAOM Strategic Plan. Having a dedicated division within the organization that has a separate governance structure will facilitate more development of products and services for NCCAOM Diplomates and the Academy will be better positioned to provide greater promotion and advocacy for its Diplomate members. The impetus for creating this separate chartered division of the NCCAOM was to consolidate all of the organization’s membership-type services available to Diplomates and keep the certification services separate.

Q. (2). Who can be a member of the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates?

A. (2). All active NCCAOM Diplomates in good standing are automatically enrolled as a member of the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates. There is no membership dues or fees associated with being a member of the Academy. As long as you are an NCCAOM Diplomate, you are also a member of the Academy.

Q. (3). How do I sign up for membership of the Academy?

A. (3). As long as you are an NCCAOM Diplomate, you will automatically be enrolled as a member of the Academy. There is no need to sign up separately. The NCCAOM is planning to send membership information and benefits to Diplomates by early 2017. Although there is no cost to Diplomates to be a member of the Academy, those Diplomates who do not wish to become members of the Academy can opt out of membership by informing the NCCAOM once the full roll out of the Academy occurs in early 2017.

Q. (4). What are the benefits of being a member of the Academy to me as an NCCAOM Diplomate?

A. (4). Some of the programs and activities that will fall under the new Academy include:

  • Receiving a free online subscription to Meridians: The Journal of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, sponsored by the NCCAOM
  • Providing free practitioner websites (See https://www.nccaomdiplomates.com)
  • Expanding public awareness and professional education campaigns to promote AOM and national board-certified AOM practitioners
  • Offering resources to help Diplomates seeking to work in hospitals and integrative practice settings
  • Providing tools for Diplomates to manage their practice more successfully
  • Obtaining a Standard Occupational Code for “Acupuncturist” under the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Standards of Occupational Classification (SOC) system, which will facilitate greater federal recognition for AOM practitioners (See http://www.nccaom.org/bls/)
  • Securing AOM representation on the American Medical Association Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) Health Care Advisory Committee
  • Helping to assure third party reimbursement for acupuncturist-provided acupuncture, by working with other integrative healthcare professions to implement the “non-discrimination” clause 2706 of the Affordable Care Act (See http://www.covermycare.org/cmc/).

Q. (5). If the Academy will be providing these services, then what is the difference between the NCCAOM and the Academy?

A. (5). As the NCCAOM began to create services and programs to advance acupuncture and Oriental medicine (AOM) practitioners, programs such as a public education campaign and advocacy are more outside the realm of the core service of providing national certification for AOM. The Academy allows the NCCAOM to expand our offerings and to go far beyond the initial certification to help our Diplomates be successful in their careers as AOM practitioners. Its focus will be more on member-oriented programs and activities rather than on just national certification and to bring greater recognition to those that are certified.

Q. (6). How will the Academy be governed?

A. (6). The Academy is governed by a separate Board of Directors and it has its own Charter. The NCCAOM Board elected the first Academy Officers at the February 2016 Board of Commissioners meeting:

  • David Canzone, Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM)®, Dipl. NBAO, DOM – Academy Chair
  • Iman Majd, MD, MS, EAMP, Dip. ABFM, ABoIM, Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM)®, DABMA, ABIHM, Certified GUNN-IMS – Academy Vice-Chair
  • Steve Kazmierczak, Ph.D., DABCC – Academy Treasurer
  • Kory Ward-Cook, Ph.D., CAE –  Academy CEO

Q. (7). If the Academy is not charging dues, then how will it raise funds?

A. (7). The Academy membership model will be based on a non-dues revenue model. Funding for the Academy will be based on providing unique services, programs and products. The Academy will be focused on creating meaningful products and services that will benefit its Diplomates at a discounted fee and it will also hold an annual educational conference at a reduced fee for Diplomates.

Q. (8). Will the Academy be working with other national and state AOM associations?

A. (8). The goal for the Academy is to work cooperatively and synergistically with all AOM professional associations so that we can achieve success for every Diplomate, and greater public awareness and acceptance of AOM practitioners. The Academy will be working collaboratively with other associations and the membership division of the NCCAOM is not a replacement for the other national organizations who represent all licensed acupuncturists. The Academy is representing NCCAOM Diplomates and the Diplomate credential and not the entire AOM profession. The ASA and AAAOM are membership associations representing all licensed acupuncturists.

Q. (9). Will the Academy take on all initiatives related to AOM?

A. (9) No. The primary purpose of the Academy is to advance its Diplomates and distinguish them amongst the other practitioners of acupuncture to consumers, the media, employers, insurance companies and other healthcare providers. The Academy will be compiling a list of projects that it will be working on in 2016/2017. Other projects and issues not related to the advancement of our Diplomates will be referred to AOM national and state associations.

Q. (10). Will the Academy be launching a PR campaign or annual conference?

A. (10). Yes. The Academy is already working with a top PR firm to promote NCCAOM Diplomates for distribution of press releases, media campaigns and materials for Diplomates to promote themselves. The Academy will also be releasing a new website for this purpose – stay tuned for this information by late 2016. In addition, the Academy will be hosting an annual conference in September 2017 as a continuing education and network opportunity for all AOM practitioners with a discount for Diplomates.

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Updated July 2016

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