White House Petition to Designate ‘Acupuncturist’ as a Recognized Healthcare Provider
Goal Achieved! 27,000+ Signatures on the White House Petition
As many of you have heard, the acupuncture and Oriental medicine (AOM) community pulled together to achieve the monumental goal of obtaining more than the 25,000 signatures needed to activate the White House Petition to designate ‘Acupuncturist’ as a recognized healthcare provider under the Social Security Act.
A big thank you goes out to everyone who participated in the effort to get the White House Petition signed by the deadline of February 10. The AAAOM, NCCAOM, state associations, individual practitioners, friends and family, and so many more were able to collaborate to collect 27,000+ signatures for this petition to get acupuncturists recognized under the Social Security Act.
To continue to follow the progress and response to the petition, please see link to the petition itself: https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/recognize-acupuncturist-healthcare-providers/NTNpVFnp
NCCAOM® Programs Receive Reaccreditation
NCCAOM® Programs Receive NCCA Reaccreditation for Acupuncture, Chinese Herbology and Oriental Medicine Certification Programs
Media Contact: Mina Larson
Jacksonville, FL – (January 2, 2013) The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) is pleased to announce that it has been granted reaccreditation for its certification programs in Acupuncture, Chinese Herbology, and Oriental Medicine by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) for a period of five years through August 30, 2017.
NCCAOM first attained NCCA accreditation for its Acupuncture Certification Program in 1991, and the Chinese Herbology Program was subsequently accredited in 1996. The Oriental Medicine Certification Program became accredited for the first time in 2007. To view the NCCA website of accredited certification programs, please go to the NCCA-Accredited Programs Directory.
“NCCA accreditation is another demonstration that NCCAOM’s certification programs are of the highest quality. The public and state regulators can feel confident that an NCCAOM certified practitioner has met nationally recognized standards of competency and safety in acupuncture and Oriental medicine,” said Kory Ward-Cook, CAE, Ph.D., NCCAOM’s Chief Executive Officer.
NCCA is the accreditation body of the Institute for Credentialing Excellence (ICE). Established in 1977, the NCCA is the leader in setting quality standards for credentialing organizations. NCCA accredits certifying programs based on the highest quality standards in professional certification to ensure that these programs adhere to current standards of practice in the certification industry. Accreditation clearly demonstrates that NCCAOM’s procedures are rigorous and defensible, thus increasing the value of NCCAOM’s certifications. Please visit the ICE website to view NCCA’s standards.
The NCCA standards require demonstration of a valid and reliable process for development, implementation, maintenance, and governance of certification programs. NCCA uses a rigorous peer review process to establish accreditation standards; evaluate compliance with the standards; recognize organizations/programs which demonstrate compliance; and serve as a resource on quality certification. Certification organizations that submit their programs for accreditation are evaluated based on the process and products, and not the content; therefore, the Standards are applicable to all professions and industries. Program content validity is demonstrated by comprehensive job analyses conducted and analyzed by subject matter experts, informed by data gathered from stakeholders in the occupation or industry.
Information about NCCAOM certification programs and a directory of certified practitioners are available at www.nccaom.org.
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization established in 1982. The mission of NCCAOM is to establish, assess, and promote recognized standards of competence and safety in acupuncture and Oriental medicine for the protection and benefit of the public.
New Study Shows Acupuncture Effective for Chronic Pain
Acupuncture is Effective for Chronic Pain: New Study Published in Archives of Internal Medicine
A new study published this week in the Archives of Internal Medicinereveals that acupuncture is more effective for chronic pain than “sham acupuncture,” which is a placebo version of the treatment. This study has been touted as one of the largest, most rigorous and robust analyses to date on the effectiveness of acupuncture treatments for the amelioration of pain.
This research, an outcomes analysis from 29 randomized controlled trial studies, included nearly 18,000 people being treated for chronic pain from osteoarthritis, headaches, back, or shoulder pain. The study evaluated true acupuncture treatments in comparison to one of two alternatives: treatment as usual or sham acupuncture. The scientists concluded that the results of the analysis demonstrated that the specific effect of needling at true acupuncture points was statistically superior to sham needling. The authors also concluded that acupuncture was an effective and reasonable treatment option for the conditions evaluated.
A particular strength of this analysis was the large sample of patients studied and the rigorous exclusion criteria employed. This suggests that the significant effect of acupuncture was not likely due to study bias or sample size issues. Moreover, the effect size of acupuncture, when compared to other interventions such as usual care or ancillary care was also significant. Together this data strongly suggest that acupuncture should be an option for pain patients.
The study also revealed that these differences are relatively modest, suggesting that factors in addition to the specific effects of needling are also important contributors to the therapeutic effects of acupuncture. This confirms it is vital that consumers seek experienced and qualified acupuncturists for pain relief. “An acupuncture practitioner who is certified by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM®) and licensed in their state has the necessary education and training to effectively treat patients for chronic pain and other ailments”, states Dr. Kory Ward-Cook, NCCAOM Chief Executive Officer. “These competent practitioners will have the knowledge and skills to effectively treat pain as indicated by this important study.”
The embracement of complementary and alternative medicine such as acupuncture has steadily grown over the past several years. According to the 2007 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) conducted by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) and the Center for Disease Control’s National Center for Health Statistics, adults in the United States spent $33.9 billion out-of-pocket on visits to complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) practitioners and purchases of CAM products, classes, and materials for self-care. “This study reinforces what thousands of physicians have declared and consumers have experienced for many years; acupuncture is medically effective for the treatment of chronic pain”, states Michael Jabbour, president of the American Association for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AAAOM).
To seek a qualified and competent practitioner of acupuncture and Oriental medicine, the public is encouraged to utilize the Find a Practitioner directory of NCCAOM. The NCCAOM Directory can be accessed at www.nccaom.org
Link to the abstract of the study:
Acupuncture for Chronic Pain Individual Patient Data Meta-analysis
Andrew J. Vickers, D Phil; Angel M. Cronin, MS; Alexandra C. Maschino, BS; George Lewith, MD; Hugh MacPherson, PhD; Nadine E. Foster, DPhil; Karen J. Sherman, PhD; Claudia M. Witt, MD; Klaus Linde, MD; for the Acupuncture Trialists’ Collaboration
Arch Intern Med. Published online September 10, 2012. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2012.365
AAAOM: Formed in 1981 as the unifying force for the acupuncture and Oriental medicine (AOM) profession in the U.S., the AAAOM is dedicated to promoting ethical practice and high educational and regulatory standards for the licensure of American acupuncturists. The AAAOM members include individual practitioners, their small businesses, physicians, healthcare professionals, patients, and state professional associations. The AAAOM recognizes an emerging national standard for programmatic accreditation and qualifying examinations for licensure in states regulating acupuncture and Oriental medicine. For more information, visit http://www.aaaomonline.org/.
NCCAOM®: The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM)® is a non-profit organization based in Jacksonville, Florida established in 1982. Its mission is to establish, assess, and promote recognized standards of competence and safety in acupuncture and Oriental medicine for the protection and benefit of the public. The NCCAOM is the only national certification organization whose certification programs are accredited by the National Commission or Certifying
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If you would like more information about the AAAOM or NCCAOM®, please contact Mina Larson, Deputy Director, NCCAOM® at 703-314-2908 or Michael Jabbour, AAAOM President at email@example.com.
Alert on Fraudulent Websites Claiming to Offer Services for NCCAOM Certification or NCCAOM® Exam Preparation
Jacksonville, FL – Adhering to our mission of public safety, the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM®) would like to alert all stakeholders that certain entities are claiming to offer services via the internet for the preparation of the NCCAOM exams or assistance with the NCCAOM certification. Please be aware that the NCCAOM does not have any formal affiliation or agreement with any third-party certification assistance organizations or any organizations claiming affiliation with the NCCAOM.
The NCCAOM is aware that misleading and inaccurate information has been posted on certain websites claiming a special relationship or affiliation with the NCCAOM, including assistance with the certification process and assistance in studying and passing NCCAOM examinations. Please be aware that this information is fraudulent. The NCCAOM has ordered these institutions to remove the misleading and erroneous information from their websites and will be working diligently to take legal action against anyone claiming to offer these types of services. We encourage anyone who sees such claims on any institution’s website, please send the website link to NCCAOM.
In an effort to protect its intellectual property from this type of misuse, the NCCAOM has registered all of its trademarks to include the NCCAOM logo, acronym, service marks, tagline, and PDA logo with the U.S. Patent and Trade Office (USPTO) as well as in China, Korea and Canada. The NCCAOM has also registered all of its certification designations with the USPTO this year. Anyone using these trademarks without the sole permission of the NCCAOM will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
The NCCAOM publishes via the NCCAOM website the NCCAOM Study Guide and Exam Content Outlines for all interested exam candidates in preparation for the NCCAOM examinations. In addition, the NCCAOM encourages anyone interested in certification assistance to contact NCCAOM directly. For additional information regarding this announcement, please contact Mina Larson, Deputy Director at (703) 314-2908 or via e-mail.
NCCAOM Receives Registration for Certification Trademarks by the U.S. Patent and Trade Office
Jacksonville, FL – NCCAOM is pleased to announce that it has received registration on all four of its Diplomate certification trademarks from the United States Patent and Trade Office (USPTO). This registration means that only active NCCAOM Diplomates can exclusively use these credentials to identify and promote their certification. In order to ensure proper compliance of USPTO registration laws and regulations, NCCAOM Diplomates should now list their NCCAOM credentials exactly as they appear below:
“It is important that all NCCAOM Diplomates proudly and properly display their credentials to their patients, peers and the public as they symbolize an achievement and distinction only met through active NCCAOM certification”, stated Dr. Kory Ward-Cook, NCCAOM Chief Executive Officer. As these certification trademarks are now protected under USPTO law, any individual who does not hold an active certification by the NCCAOM and uses the above credentials is in violation of federal laws and can be subject to sanctions. For more information, please contact Mina Larson.
NCCAOM’s mission is to establish, assess and promote recognized standards of competence and safety in acupuncture and Oriental medicine for the protection and benefit of the public.
National Herbal Medicine Week Established to Celebrate the Safe and Effective Practice of Herbal Therapies for Thousands of Years
Jacksonville, FL and Bethesda, MD – The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM®) and the American Association for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AAAOM) are pleased to join in the promotion of National Herbal Medicine Week from May 1-7, 2012 sponsored by the AAAOM, in recognition of the diversity of all ancient and modern herbal traditions worldwide. National Herbal Medicine Week is a time of year when practitioners, consumers, and organizational leaders join in the opportunity to share their knowledge and highlight the strength of this gentle and effective treatment. As one of the first medicines used to treat ailments, herbal medicine continues to be used safely and effectively by many fully trained practitioners world-wide for a variety of conditions, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Herbal medicine practitioners combine the best of modern science and thousands of years of clinical effectiveness to help patients relieve many health conditions.
Thousands of practitioners in the U.S. have invested their talents and expertise to improve their patients’ health through herbal medicine. Many health problems can be effectively treated by using traditional herbal remedies. According to WHO, these include high blood pressure, digestive disorders, gynecological disturbances, fatigue, insomnia, infertility, among other ailments. Herbal medicine is also recognized as being a safe potential adjunctive therapy to help mitigate the side effects of chemotherapy or radiation.
Herbal remedies come in a variety of forms and are available from many different vendors; it is crucial that consumers seek the care of a certified and licensed practitioner who has received extensive education and training in the practice of herbal medicine in order to achieve the most optimal results. The AAAOM and NCCAOM® recommend seeking the advice of an NCCAOM® certified practitioner of Chinese herbology or Oriental medicine or a state licensed practitioner with specialized training in herbal medicine before using Chinese herbs to improve their health.
“When prescribed herbs by an NCCAOM® certified practitioner, one can be assured that the practitioner has the education and expertise to help you achieve your medical goals safely and effectively,” stated NCCAOM® Board Chair David Canzone. NCCAOM® Diplomates of Chinese Herbology and Oriental Medicine can be found through the NCCAOM® website by going to Find a Practitioner on the home page. National Herbal Medicine Week is an opportunity to encourage dialogue to dispel any misconceptions about herbal medicine as well as explore the many benefits of this time-proven and effective medicine,” stated AAAOM President Michael Jabbour. “National Herbal Medicine Week is a chance for the public to find out more about this important topic directly from the experts.”
Importance of NCCAOM certification mentioned on Dr. Oz Show
The NCCAOM celebrated Leap Day 2012 with a segment on the popular Dr. Oz Show featuring the benefits of Chinese herbal medicine. NCCAOM Diplomate Janet Tsai, Dipl. Ac. & Dipl. C.H. (NCCAOM) was interviewed by Dr. Oz as she demonstrated the many benefits of Chinese herbs to include relief from fatigue and stress. The segment was devoted to bringing awareness of the power of Chinese herbs to combat various disorders. Dr. Oz and Diplomate Janet Tsai stressed to their viewers the importance of seeking a practitioner who holds an NCCAOM certification in Chinese Herbology or Oriental Medicine and is licensed to practice in a state. To view the episode of the Dr. Oz Show on Traditional Chinese Medicine, please visit these links.
CBS Morning Show Airs News Segment on Latest Research Study Promoting Acupuncture for Treatment of Migraines
Through the referral of the AAAOM , the NCCAOM responded to a media inquiry from a producer with the CBS Morning Show working on a news segment regarding a recent acupuncture study that revealed the benefits of acupuncture, versus sham, in treating migraine headaches. The NCCAOM was able to provide the CBS Morning Show with information about the benefits of acupuncture, NIH study that documented consumer growth of acupuncture as well as footage of acupuncture treatment courtesy of two NCCAOM Diplomates; a mother and daughter acupuncture team in San Diego, CA – Judith and Lia Andrews at http://www.cinnabaracupuncture.com/ . The very professional video that the Andrews provided was used as B-roll in the CBS news segment below:
If you have any positive media news stories about acupuncture and Oriental medicine that you would like to share with the NCCAOM, please contact us .
Chinese Herbology Practiced Safely by Certified and Licensed Acupuncturists
Jacksonville, FL and Sacramento, CA – The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) and the American Association for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AAAOM) are responding to a recent PBS program, which featured the report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office titled “Herbal Dietary Supplements: Examples of Deceptive or Questionable Marketing Practices and Potentially Dangerous Advice”, authored by Gregory D. Kutz.
The report stressed the importance of consumers seeking qualified practitioners for herbal treatment due the possibility of adverse drug interactions and the use of inferior herbs. Unfortunately, the report omitted that there are thousands of highly qualified Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AOM) practitioners who have been prescribing Chinese herbs for decades in the United States without harm or incident. This is why the NCCAOM is collaborating with the AAAOM to inform consumers to look for a state licensed and/or NCCAOM certified Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine practitioner when seeking herbal treatment.
“Our priority is to have consumers recognize the significance of NCCAOM Certification in Chinese Herbology and Oriental Medicine as an indication of competence and safety for the practice of Chinese herbology,” said NCCAOM Chief Executive Officer Dr. Kory Ward-Cook. “NCCAOM certified practitioners have met the necessary educational requirements and have also passed a rigorous assessment to practice Chinese herbology and Oriental medicine safely and efficaciously for several decades in the United States.”
The government report does not acknowledge the extensive education and training AOM practitioners complete. “Herbology is one of the main branches of Oriental medicine, and as reinforced by the World Health Organization, Chinese herbs can be very effective in treating a variety of ailments, such as high blood pressure and arthritis, when prescribed by a licensed practitioner,” said AAAOM President Jeannie Kang. “Consumers are best served when they rely on a state licensed and/or NCCAOM certified AOM practitioner for the safe prescription and dispensing of herbs.”
As part of their mission to protect the public welfare, the NCCAOM and state licensing boards maintain a general listing of certified and licensed practitioners on their websites at aaaomonline.org and nccaom.org. The public is encouraged to utilize these and state directories when seeking a qualified and competent AOM practitioner.
If you would like more information about the AAAOM or NCCAOM, please contact Doug Newton, Operations Manager, AAAOM at (916) 443-4770 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Mina Larson, Director of Public, Professional, and Regulatory Affairs, NCCAOM at 703-314-2908 or email@example.com.
The Safety of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
We, at the American Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AAAOM) and the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM), are very proud of the outstanding safety record acupuncture and Oriental Medical practices have achieved over the long history of their use in our country. We take any reports of adverse effects from acupuncture, especially reports of deaths, very seriously and note that not a single death has been reported to result from acupuncture in the US. While promoters of most medical practices would consider a world-wide average of less than 2 deaths out of tens of millions of patients a year to be a remarkably low level of risk, we find these numbers unacceptable, and other Oriental approaches to medicine, are completely preventable when standards of competent practice are followed.
Over the past 40 years, high standards of training, certification, and practice have been established within the American acupuncture and Oriental medical profession. Periodically, reports surface about the safety of acupuncture, an often these reports represent incomplete or inaccurate information. However, they are a reminder that, while acupuncture is a highly effective and valuable form of healthcare, it is not an entirely risk-free medical procedure, and should only be administered by practitioners with the proper training who follow accepted guidelines of practice. We urge the American public to seek-out only qualified, state licensed acupuncturists and Oriental medical professionals who are also nationally certified by the NCCAOM when accessing these increasingly popular services and we call on the media to help us spread this message.
According to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), numerous surveys show that of all the complementary and holistic medical practices, of which there are many, acupuncture enjoys the most credibility in the medical community. Over 500 clinical trials measuring the efficacy of acupuncture have been conducted in the past three decades. At least fifty systematic reviews of these trials (as profiled in the Cochrane Library) have been completed by researchers from credible institutions, such as the Mayo Clinic, resulting in substantial evidence that acupuncture is more effective than sham acupuncture and that acupuncture is very effective in treating chronic pain, fatigue, anxiety, arthritis, headaches, chemotherapy sickness, and infertility, among other ailments.
At the American Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AAAOM), we believe that articles like Dr. Ernst’s are a damaging disservice to the American public. As a society, we need new and creative solutions to confront our healthcare crisis and improve the overall health and wellness of our citizens. This requires integrating the best from both eastern (AOM) and western (allopathic) approaches to improve how we prevent and treat pain and illness, and realize optimal health and healing.
Christian M. Ellis
American Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
If you would like more information about the AAAOM or NCCAOM, please contact Doug Newton, Operations Manager, AAAOM: (916) 443-4770 firstname.lastname@example.org or Mina Larson, Director of Public, Professional, and Regulatory Affairs, NCCAOM at 703-314-2908.