NCCAOM CEO & Chair Update – Spring 2023

Mina Larson
Person working at desk with many files and papers.

Spring is the season of rebirth and renewal, known not only for its beauty, but for providing the opportunity to revitalize our passions, renew relationships and seek opportunities for growth. Keeping with tradition, this is the perfect time to announce new Board leadership as we welcome Dr. Janet Zand, OMD, L.Ac., CCN, Dipl. OM (NCCAOM) as the newly appointed Chair of the Board of Commissioners. Together as CEO and Chair, we hope to make this a productive year of the Rabbit.  As we look forward to the remainder of the year NCCAOM as an organization is always working hard to be more receptive to our Diplomate’s needs and desires.

Throughout this exciting year we will focus on harmonizing our efforts with the NCCAOM Diplomates and other leading organizations in the profession to accomplish our goals to advance and promote our Diplomates. Goals such as Medicare coverage for acupuncture treatments through the Acupuncture for Our Seniors Act HR 3133. This key piece of legislation was just reintroduced to the United States House of Representatives May 9 through the hard work of our NCCAOM and ASA advocacy team (please read the Advocacy Update article below). A synchronization of our efforts to introduce this bipartisan bill is just the start of a productive year. Our advocacy team will be on hand to provide you with additional updates.

The difficult circumstances spread over the past years have emphasized the need to prioritize what is most important for our profession. As a national certification body, this means we place extra emphasis on reviewing and auditing all our internal governance policies and procedures to ensure these policies and procedures provide maximum value to our NCCAOM Board Certified AcupuncturistsTM.

As has been a constant theme over the past years, many Diplomates had expressed through our Diplomate Satisfaction Survey that advocacy and public education should be a priority for the NCCAOM. This is exactly what we have put in motion with our collaboration with the American

Society for Acupuncturists (ASA) through our advocacy campaign – to bring greater recognition to our NCCAOM National Board-Certified AcupuncturistsTM in the federal arena. You will have an opportunity to read more about our collaborative advocacy campaign achievements in our Advocacy Update article in this issue.

As our advocacy team works together with ASA bringing greater awareness to our medicine, the certification services team is working tirelessly to make your recertification process smoother and more efficient. We have received more positive comments from our Diplomates than any previous Diplomate Satisfaction Surveys regarding the ease and efficacy of the recertification process. Application processing times have been improved even further, impressive given application processing speed from recent years. Our team would love to hear from you about your recertification experience. Send us an email at [email protected]. The NCCAOM staff also offered an informative webinar focused on the advancement and updates of our Recertification program. If you missed it, you can watch the replay here.

As part of our goal to protect the public and ensure the safety of the acupuncture and herbal medicine profession, the NCCAOM is committed to furthering our efforts in improving the

NCCAOM’s Professional Ethics and Disciplinary process. The cornerstone of the NCCAOM’s commitment to ethical business practices and professional conduct is the NCCAOM Code of Ethics. Every NCCAOM Diplomate and applicant pledges to abide by the NCCAOM Code of Ethics standards and procedures as a condition of NCCAOM certification and certification maintenance. The PEDC began its work to update the Code of Ethics during the summer of 2021 and completed the final draft in the Fall of 2022. In 2023 the Professional Ethics and Disciplinary Committee (PEDC) will seek to emphasize the importance of the new Code of Ethics as well as the role the Grounds for Professional Discipline and the NCCAOM Procedures for Upholding Professional Conduct. Cathy Goldstein, AP, NCCAOM Dipl, Vice Chair of Professional Ethics and Disciplinary Committee has provided a helpful article with additional information about the Professional Ethics and Disciplinary Review process.

The NCCAOM Board of Commissioners and staff are also excited to welcome our newest Commissioner, Belinda (Beau) Anderson, Board Commissioner, PhD, MA(Ed), Dipl. O.M. (NCCAOM)®, L.Ac.  To read more about our new NCCAOM Board Commissioner Beau Anderson please see our article in this newsletter or please visit the NCCAOM Governance page of the website.

On behalf of the NCCAOM staff and volunteers I would like to express our gratitude to Afua Bromley who dedicated nine years to the NCCAOM Board of Commissioners including serving as NCCAOM Board Chair for three years. The entire organization and profession owe her a great debt of gratitude and appreciation for all her efforts and leadership over the great many years she served.

The NCCAOM is looking to carry on the spirit of renewal by continuing to search for Practitioner Member NCCAOM National Board-Certified AcupuncturistsTM to serve on the Board in 2024. Interested applicants can apply directly via the NCCAOM portal with a new and improved all digital application process. We are strongly committed to providing equal opportunity and access to all qualified candidates to serve on the Board, and we strongly believe that diversity in our profession should be reflected in our Board. For a review of current BOC members please visit the Volunteer With Us page of the NCCAOM website.

Looking into the future, the NCCAOM will remain committed to providing you with exceptional customer service, as evidenced by our recent Diplomate Satisfaction Survey, and to living by our core values adopted at our June 2020 Board meeting.  We are excited about the journey that lies ahead for the NCCAOM and our profession, and we thank you for the opportunity to serve.  Happy Spring!

Mina Larson, M.S., MBA, CAE


Janet Zand Signature

Janet Zand, Board Chair

O.M.D., Dipl. Ac., C.H., O.M. (NCCAOM)®, L.Ac., CCN

Board Chair

NCCAOM Board of Commissioners Updates

New NCCAOM Board Chair, Janet Zand, O.M.D., Dipl. Ac., C.H., O.M. (NCCAOM)®, L.Ac., CCN

The NCCAOM Board of Commissioners is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr. Janet Zand. Dr. Zand has over thirty years of private practice experience in natural medicine including acupuncture, herbal medicine, functional medicine and nutrition.

Dr. Zand is the author of Smart Medicine for a Healthier Child, A Parent’s Guide to Medical Emergencies, and Smart Medicine for Healthier Living (Penguin/Putnam Publishing, 1994, 1997, 1998, respectively). She also published The Nitric Oxide (NO) Solution (2010). Zand was the cofounder and Chairman of the Board of Zand Herbal Formulas, Inc. from 1978-2002.

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Dr. Zand was inducted into the Hall of Legends and acknowledged by the National Nutritional Food Association and New Hope as a thought leader, innovator, and leader in the natural products industry in 2015. Along with her service as a subject matter expert on the NCCAOM Biomedicine Examination Committee, Dr. Zand began her first term on the NCCAOM Board of Commissioners in February 2017 and was elected Chair of the Board to begin in 2023.

As Chair, Dr. Zand will continue to be an advocate for qualified acupuncturists through NCCAOM National Board Certification. “The NCCAOM is pleased to have Dr. Zand begin her service as the Chair of the NCCAOM Board of Commissioners. She brings a wealth of experience and leadership at a time when NCCAOM is working with other organizations on a path to create greater access to qualified acupuncturists,” said Mina Larson, CEO. “Dr. Zand continues to be a champion for our efforts to integrate NCCAOM Board-Certified Acupuncturists into the U.S. healthcare systems through advocacy and public awareness. Her expertise and vast background in the healthcare arena and business will help lead the NCCAOM in these efforts.”

The Board of Commissioners and staff of the NCCAOM are indebted to Immediate Past Board Chair Dr. Iman Majd for his strong and effective leadership during the last three years. We are happy to announce that Dr. Majd will continue to serve on the NCCAOM Board of Commissioners as Immediate Past Chair.

Person working at desk with many files and papers.

New Commissioner Belinda (Beau) Anderson, PhD, MA(Ed), LAc

The NCCAOM Board of Commissioners welcomes Dr. Beau Anderson as its newest member. Dr. Anderson is Associate Dean and Professor of Allied Health at Pace University in the College of Health Professions (NY), an Associate Clinical Professor at Albert Einstein College of Medicine (Bronx, NY), and a Research Professor at Pacific College of Health and Science (Pacific College, NY). She earned her PhD in Molecular Biology from the University of Sydney (Australia), her Masters in Higher Education from Teachers College Columbia University, and her Masters in Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine from the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (New England School of Acupuncture).

Dr. Anderson has over 25 years of administrative, clinical, research and teaching experience. She was the Academic Dean at Pacific College for 12 years (2006-2018).

Dr. Anderson is an NIH-funded researcher, and her recent research focuses on implementing acupuncture in community-based clinics, educating clinicians in evidence-based medicine, and the use of Chinese herbs to treat COVID-19 symptoms.

Dr. Anderson was a member of the NIH National Advisory Council for Complementary and Integrative Health 2018-2021, serves as Deputy Editor for Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing, and is Co-Chair of the Research Working Group of the Academic Collaborative for Integrative Health (ACIH) within the Academy of Integrative Health and Medicine (AIHM).

From 2009-2018 she maintained a Chinese medicine private practice at New York University Fertility Center and is an internationally recognized expert in the use of acupuncture to improve assisted reproductive outcomes. In 2020 Dr. Anderson completed the Duke University year-long Leadership in Integrative Health and Medicine program.

The NCCAOM Board of Commissioners is glad to welcome Dr. Anderson to the Board of Commissioners as a Practitioner Member in 2023.

NCCAOM Immediate Past Board Chair Dr. Majd, MD, MS, EAMP/L.Ac, Dip. ABFM, ABoIM, Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM)®, DABMA, ABIHM

The NCCAOM Board and staff express their sincere gratitude to Dr. Majd for serving as the Chair of the NCCAOM Board from March 2020 to March 2023. As Board Chair, he had a significant impact on furthering the organization’s mission and providing expanded services to our Diplomates and candidates during unprecedented times during the pandemic. Dr. Majd is also the Founding Director of the Osher Center for Integrative Health Clinic at the University of Washington and an Integrative Medicine physician. In his practice, Dr. Majd, combines a whole-health approach with conventional medicine to optimize patients’ health.  Dr. Majd is serving as the first appointed Immediate Past Chair for the NCCAOM Board. The NCCAOM is looking forward to working with Dr. Majd as our Immediate Past Chair.

Person working at desk with many files and papers.
Person working at desk with many files and papers.

Retiring Commissioner Afua Bromley, DACM, Dipl. Ac (NCCAOM)®, L.Ac.

The Board of Commissioners and staff would like to thank Afua Bromley for her nine years of dedicated service on the NCCAOM Board, serving as Chair from 2017-2019. Dr. Bromely is a 1998 graduate of the Florida College of Integrative Medicine (formerly the National College of Oriental Medicine) in Orlando, FL. After graduation, she also completed a summer internship at Yu Huang Ding Hospital in Yantai, China.

Dr. Bromley served on the MO Governor’s Acupuncture Advisory Committee (Missouri’s acupuncture regulatory committee) from 1999-2006, helping write the rules and regulations for the State of Missouri after its licensing law was passed. She has also served as President of the Acupuncture Association of Missouri.

In addition to her private practice, Bromley worked at CHIPS (Community Health-In-Partnership Services), a multi-specialty clinic for uninsured and underinsured individuals in north St. Louis from 2000-2012 and run St Louis City Drug Courts Acupuncture Detox Program. Throughout her career, she has worked to promote equal access to quality integrative medical care to those in underserved communities, particularly African-American and Latino communities, as well as those living with HIV/AIDS. She is the founder of Universal Holistic Healthcare Service(UHHS), a nonprofit 501(c)(3), dedicated to providing acupuncture and integrative medicine through service and empowerment education, through such activities as STD/HIV prevention education, nutrition workshops, a women’s support group for those living with HIV/AIDS, and several 18-week women’s health empowerment programs.  UHHS is currently working on building an integrative health clinic and community health worker training program in Ghana, West Africa, and a global virtual integrative health educational platform.

She has been an NCCAOM Diplomate since 1999 and served as Commissioner on the NCCAOM Board of Commissioners from February 2014, to March 2023.

NCCAOM Advocacy Update – April 2023

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The NCCAOM® Advocacy team represents NCCAOM certification, Diplomates, and stakeholders by providing information to promote acupuncture services to state and federal policymakers, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), as well as other stakeholder groups.

Advocacy News

The Acupuncture for our Seniors Act Re-Introduced!
The NCCAOM advocacy team, in collaboration with the ASA advocacy team, is pleased to announce that U.S. Representatives Judy Chu (D-CA) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), re-introduced H.R. 3133, the Acupuncture for our Seniors Act on Tuesday, May 9, 2023. H.R. 3133 would authorize the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to recognize qualified acupuncturists as healthcare providers. Medicare recognition would enable acupuncturists to provide covered services to Medicare beneficiaries, which will soon surpass 80-million Americans.

Reps. Chu and Fitzpatrick are both members of the House Ways & Means Committee, which has jurisdiction over the Medicare program. Their support for this bill is strategically critical as we work toward advancing H.R. 3133 further this Congress. The House Energy & Commerce Committee also has jurisdiction over the Medicare program. As the ASA/NCCAOM team continues to build support for the Acupuncture for our Seniors Act, we will focus on securing co-sponsors from both the Energy & Commerce and the Ways & Means Committees.

NCCAOM Partners with ASA to Host Federal Fly In
On Monday, May 15, ASA Fly-In participants convened on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. to launch the profession’s advocacy effort for H.R. 3133. Collectively, over 100 participants met with over 60 offices in the U.S. House of Representatives to raise awareness of the acupuncture profession and H.R. 3133.

The Fly-In coincided with ASA’s Acupuncture for our Public Servants demonstration, where over 130 Congressional staff members and employees received acupuncture to help raise awareness of acupuncture and our effort to obtain Medicare recognition.

The ASA and NCCAOM Advocacy Team thanks Fly-In participants for their help in making these events a success!

Supporting the Acupuncture for our Seniors Act

There are many ways to get involved with advocating for H.R. 3133—and your support for this bill is critical. Here are just a few ways you can help support this bill from the comfort of your home:

Virtual Hill Meetings
The ASA/NCCAOM will organize your virtual Hill meeting so you can meet with your U.S. Representative’s office to make the case for H.R. 3133. The ASA/NCCAOM team will take care of everything (scheduling, talking points, preparing you) and will participate in these meetings with you. All you need to do is to let us know your availability for virtual Hill meeting here or by scanning the QR code below:


Grassroots at your Fingertips
The ASA/NCCAOM team will also use our grassroots software platform to help you, your patients, Senior Citizens, and general supporters of the profession contact Congressional Representatives about H.R. 3133 by texting any of the following phrases to 52886. After sending your text, follow the generated link to a composed email and Twitter message that you can send to your Representatives as is, or modify to provide additional information.

Text any of the phrases below to 52886 and follow the link you’ll receive in reply:

  • “Acupuncture” – Acupuncture Campaign
  • “Student” – Student Campaign
  • “Acupuncture Patient” – Patient Campaign
  • “Senior Citizen” – Senior Citizen Campaign
  • “Acupuncture Ally” – Ally Campaign

Example: If you’re a student, type Student to 52886. If you’re an acupuncturist, type Acupuncture to 52886, etc.

Medicare-Recognition Background
Obtaining provider status under Medicare would enable acupuncturists to directly bill Medicare for the covered services that they provide to Medicare beneficiaries (generally those 65 and older). This recognition is critical to advancing the acupuncturist profession, as it would grant more individuals access to qualified acupuncturists—and more qualified acupuncturists access to those over 65 years of age. Medicare recognition would also help the profession collect and generate data on the acupuncture benefits, particularly with regard to quality and cost.

CMS just covers acupuncture services for chronic lower back pain (cLBP), but does not recognize acupuncturists as providers of this service. This lack of recognition prevents much of the profession from readily providing cLBP services to Medicare beneficiaries. The resulting barrier inhibits those with the most expertise and training in acupuncture from providing these services.

The NCCAOM and ASA continue to maintain a series of resources to help educate the profession on Medicare recognition and the steps required for Medicare provider status. Read more about how Medicare provider status would affect the profession by visiting the NCCAOM’s Advocacy Page.

The NCCAOM Advocacy Team Represents You

The NCCAOM advocacy team works tirelessly to advocate for its Diplomates. If there is an issue, challenge, or opportunity you would like to convey to the team, please do not hesitate to reach out!

Read more about the NCCAOM’s advocacy efforts on the NCCAOM Advocacy Page. Please contact the NCCAOM Advocacy team with any questions regarding the NCCAOM’s Advocacy efforts and ways to get involved.

The NCCAOM Advocacy Team

JA Study 2023

The NCCAOM is bound by external accreditation standards of the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) which mandates a national Job Analysis (JA) study be conducted as part of the exam development process. The JA study is conducted once every 7 years in accordance with NCCA standards. The JA study ensures the NCCAOM exam content reflects current practice of the profession.

The NCCAOM conducted a full-scale nationally conducted Job Analysis study in Fall of 2017. This means the NCCAOM will be starting the next JA process later this year in 2023. The survey will be developed based on a comprehensive review of the professional role of acupuncturists. In the 2017 JA study Over 95% of respondents indicated that the survey adequately described the critical knowledge, skills and abilities required for nationally competent, entry-level practice as an acupuncturist.

We look forward to our Diplomates participating in the JA study, and we greatly appreciate your feedback greatly. Stay tuned for the JA Survey announcement!

Professional Ethics and Disciplinary Review (PEDR) Update – Failure To Report

By: Cathy Goldstein, AP, NCCAOM Dipl, Vice Chair of Professional Ethics and Disciplinary Committee 

Person working at desk with many files and papers.

The NCCAOM has recently updated its Code of Ethics and Grounds for Professional Discipline. These updates demonstrate our shared commitment to ensuring patient safety and maintaining the highest standards of professional conduct among practitioners nationwide. To help meet these goals, the NCCAOM is including important details about specific areas of ethical concerns for your review:

Diplomate Reporting Requirements 
Diplomates are required to notify NCCAOM within thirty (30) days of the following:

  1. Notice of a disciplinary, misconduct or ethics investigation in any jurisdiction pertaining to a healthcare license or practice.
  2. An order (including private or confidential) issued by any licensing board or jurisdiction pertaining to a healthcare license or practice.
  3. Violent felony charges
  4. Misdemeanor charges related to a healthcare practice.
  5. Non-violent felony convictions

You may notice non-healthcare related misdemeanor charges are no longer reportable, but it must be stressed that ANY notice you receive of the initiation of an investigation by a state licensing board is. Whether or not a practitioner believes an investigation or complaint is based on false allegations, inaccurate or incomplete evidence is irrelevant to a practitioner’s critical duty to self-report. Michael Taromina, Chair of PEDC, has stated, “Failure to report is an easily avoidable potential ground for discipline. With our increasing staff and collaboration with state regulators I am personally certain we will always find out about state investigations anyway. Therefore, you do not want an unreported state investigation or complaint–especially one without merit–to lead to a disciplinary sanction on your record.”

With our new ethical guidelines and staffing in place, the focus for the PEDC is to work more co-operatively with state licensing boards on investigations and enforcement. A state regulator’s meeting was recently held where Mina Larson, CEO of NCCAOM, and Michael presented a plan to more efficiently and effectively work together in order to best protect the public and promote the highest ethical standards in every state. This was welcomed news to all the state regulators who attended and the strengthening of ties with the states is well underway.

Here’s how you can simply report an incident or concern to the NCCAOM:

  1. Send an email to [email protected] with the state complaint or investigation documents and your details of the incident(s) or concern(s) within 30 days of learning about it.
  2. If the 30-day window is within your certification or recertification application submission: Include the above listed information when you’re applying for certification or recertification.

But wait, there’s more! The NCCAOM has also rolled out a shiny new PEDR section on their website,, making it a breeze for practitioners and the public to find information and resources related to professional ethics and disciplinary matters. This update is just another way the NCCAOM is working full-time to boost transparency, accessibility, and overall patient safety within the acupuncture and Oriental medicine profession.

NCCAOM Recertification vs Reinstatement

Active Status

Diplomates are responsible for renewing their certification every four (4) years and are expected to maintain their active status by participating in Professional Development Activities (PDA). Diplomates must earn a minimum of 60 PDA points during the four-year period immediately preceding the expiration of their certification (recertification cycle). NCCAOM Diplomates are responsible for ensuring all PDA/CEU points completed during the recertification cycle have been reported to their Recertification Transcript (see timeline below for Active Status requirements).  To recertify, Diplomate must:

  1. Make sure all 60 PDA/CEU points have been reported to the NCCAOM Recertification Transcript
  2. Submit an online Recertification application and pay the fee.

If Certification is not renewed by the expiration date, it is moved into Lapsed Status.

Lapsed Status

A certification that is not renewed by the expiration date is moved into ‘Lapsed’ status and the Diplomate forfeits all benefits and services provided by NCCAOM including but not limited to using a Diplomate designation. Diplomates holding a certification in Lapsed status are required to submit additional PDA points and increased fees based on the length of time from certification expiration date (see timeline below for Lapsed Status requirements). To recertify, Diplomate must:

  1. Make sure all (75, 90, 105) PDA/CEU points have been reported to the NCCAOM Recertification Transcript
  2. Submit an online Recertification application and pay the fee (see timeline below)

If Certification is not renewed within three (3) years of the expiration date (three years of Lapsed Status), it is terminated.

Terminated Status

When NCCAOM certification is terminated, a former Diplomate must use the NCCAOM Reinstatement to bring their NCCAOM certification back to Active status. The Reinstatement application is completed online and expires twelve (12) months from the date of submission. All reinstatement requirements must be met within the twelve (12) month application period (for application fees and PDA requirements, see the timeline below for Terminated Status). Reinstatement requirements include:

  1. Reinstatement application. Submitted online from the former Diplomate’s online account.
  2. Documentation Requirements. CNT Review course completed with CCAHM, background screening, copy of all state acupuncture licenses.
  3. PDA/CEU Requirements. Number of PDA/CEU points required determined based on Certification Expiration date. Applicants can use the Reinstatement Calculator to calculate their PDs and fees requirements.
  4. Safety Evaluation. Online assessment consisting of 50 questions. If Safety Evaluation is unsuccessful, applicant is required to complete and submit 5 PDA points in each failed domain area.
  5. For those whose certification expired 8 years or more, Final Assessment must be passed by the applicant. Final Assessment is an online quiz that consist of 50 questions for Acupuncture or Chinese Herbology certification and 75 questions for Oriental Medicine Certification. If Final Assessment is unsuccessful, applicant is required to complete and submit 5 PDA points in each failed domain area and retake the Final Assessment.

Requirements for coming back from a Lapsed Status or Reinstatement to Active Status are much more rigorous than Recertification from Active Status, therefore, all active Diplomates are encouraged to keep the NCCAOM certification active by recertifying it every 4 years.


NCCAOM Diplomate Benefits Update:

New and Enhanced Find A Practitioner Directory


The NCCAOM is excited to announce that the New and Enhanced FAP Directory is Now Ready!

We are happy to offer this enhancement to all our valuable Diplomates as part of the many benefits of NCCAOM certification. For a full overview of all NCCAOM Diplomate benefits please, click here.

At the end of last year (2022), the NCCAOM announced upcoming enhancements for the NCCAOM Find A Practitioner (FAP) Directory. This benefit for active NCCAOM Board-Certified Acupuncturists offers new features to enhance their public-facing profile. The update also grants users of FAP (patients, insurance companies, third party payors and other healthcare practitioners) access to a wide range information about Nationally Board-Certified AcupuncturistsTM listed in the directory.

NCCAOM National Board-Certified Acupuncturists can now start putting a magic touch to their FAP public facing profile! Now NCCAOM Diplomates have an option to add:

  • Diplomate’s profile picture,
  • Diplomate’s office pictures (up to four (4)),
  • Practice locations (up to three (3) practice locations),
  • Practice description,
  • Health Conditions treated, and
  • Language spoken.

It is the Diplomate’s choice to provide all information included in the enhanced directory listing. Diplomates can enhance their directory listing by following steps outlined at the link below:

Enhancing FAP Directory Listing

Click Here for a sample preview of a fully updated public-facing profile in the NCCAOM Find A Practitioner (FAP) Directory.

The NCCAOM and Chi Online have partnered for many years to bring our valued Diplomates the free benefit of reaching the public online. To stay current with ever-changing technology, Chi Online has released improved and enhanced website templates for Diplomates to host their online presence.

Click here to see what’s new at Chi Online now!

The update from Chi Online features:

  • A variety of world-class designs representing acupuncturists
  • Pre-Written acupuncture text
  • Acupuncture stock photo gallery
  • Super-easy website editor
  • Free mobile site Included
  • Social media Integration
  • Tap to call for patients to contact you
  • Spam blocking contact form

Google analytics compatible formatting

Newly renovated websites for NCCAOM Diplomates


The update from Chi Online also includes automatically displaying your updated NCCAOM service mark. Plans are being made to convert service marks on Chi Online websites to NCCAOM Digital Badges making it easier for you to showcase your skills and qualifications.

NCCAOM and Chi Online are proud of the newly renovated free Chi Online websites offered as an exclusive benefit for NCCAOM Diplomates. A lot of hard work has been put in to help our Diplomates reach the public with beautiful, modern, and easy to navigate web designs. Visit Chi Online or click here to update or create your website today!

NCCAOM Diplomate Spotlight: Frederick M. Paff, Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM)®

Once a quarter the NCCAOM draws the name of a recently recertified Diplomate who has completed the NCCAOM® Diplomate Demographic Survey. This is a very important survey that provides NCCAOM and the profession with much needed demographic information for projects such as federal recognition.

(Frederick) Michael Paff is a licensed acupuncturist in New Jersey and New York. He currently maintains a practice in River Edge, NJ and teaches Acupuncture at the Eastern School of Acupuncture and Traditional Medicine in Bloomfield, NJ. His practice, 5 Virtues Healing, treats a wide range of conditions using Acupuncture and Traditional medicine including, but not limited to: acute and chronic pain, allergic and dermatological conditions, OB/GYN, headaches, gastrointestinal issues, insomnia, and anxiety, to name a few. Patients experience not just treatment for their dysfunction, but the tools, through Qigong and TCM dietary therapy, to build a solid foundation of health and vitality.

The survey winner receives a voucher for a free recertification and an opportunity to be featured in a Spotlight Article on Facebook and on our website. We encourage all Diplomates to participate in this important survey to help advance the profession and have a chance to win a free recertification.

The winner of the January 1, 2023 Diplomate Demographic Survey drawing is NCCAOM Certified Diplomate of Acupuncture, Frederick M. Paff.

It is wonderful that you are an NCCAOM National Board-Certified Acupuncturist practicing at 5 Virtues Healing, LLC, in River Edge, NJ. Tell us a little about 5 Virtues Healing, LLC?

FMP: 5 Virtues Healing offers acupuncture and its associated modalities such as cupping, Tui Na, Gua Sha and moxibustion. Different styles of acupuncture are available, as well, including Kiiko Matsumoto style Japanese acupuncture, Master Tung’s Magic points and auricular. Qigong instruction along with TCM dietary therapy make up a substantial part of the practice, as every patient is prescribed the appropriate Qigong and food necessary to aid in their recovery, health and vitality.

How were you initially attracted to the field of Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine?

FMP: My initiation into Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine started in Japanese Martial Arts while I was in elementary school. Being a student in a traditional dojo, we learned the foundations of medicine in caring for our sparring and competition injuries. My journey changed course when I became ill and modern medicine could find no cause, or cure, or even alleviate my pain. I was fortunate to be introduced to Grandmaster Nan Lu. He treated me with Herbal Medicine, Acupuncture and allowed me to become his Qigong student. After many years as a student, I took on the challenge of entering the profession that turned my life around.

What do you specialize in as an NCCAOM National Board-Certified Acupuncturist? Is this specialization a major part of your practice?

FMP: I chose to specialize in practicing in the most traditional ways possible in the modern world. I have an expertise in pain management and chronic conditions after having spent my Intern rotations at a VA hospital. As part of physical medicine and pain management, our clinic treated a wide variety of patients. From musculoskeletal disorders to terminal cancers, dermatological conditions to reconstructive surgeries, in all cases patients suffered from significant pain.

Could you share a little about why this specialization is important to you?

FMP: Quite simply, when a person spends the majority of their mental capacity thinking about, managing, enduring pain conditions, they are essentially unable to be present and actively participate in their own daily lives.

Is there an experience within your specialty which stands out? If so, could you briefly share what made that experience significant to you?

FMP: The treatment of woman in her early 40’s, who survived a life threatening motor vehicle accident. Her pelvis had been bolted back together, she had a titanium femur and tibia and a few titanium vertebrae. The affected body parts could not even bear the lightest palpation.
Her passion was coaching wheelchair archery and her pain kept her from it. Using Master Tung points and distal image points she returned to archery from a wheelchair in less than 12 weeks. It was extraordinary.

With the NCCAOM’s focus on Diversity Equity and Inclusion, do you have any experiences or efforts in treating underserved communities or breaking barriers using acupuncture and herbal medicine?

FMP: I couldn’t say I’ve broken any barriers. I do think our Veteran’s are often underserved and treating them gave me a greater appreciation for some of the things they do and endure.

What do you think are the most beneficial aspects and challenging aspects of practicing acupuncture and herbal medicine?

FMP: The most beneficial is its ability to correct conditions, or at least create durable remissions. Most challenging is bringing the Western/Modern mind to a greater understanding of what constitutes medicine and how Modern and Traditional medicine can be cooperative.

Do you think NCCAOM certification is important? Why have you maintained your NCCAOM certification?

FMP: Being board certified certainly gives the public confidence in knowing their practitioner is properly trained and educated. And obviously, many states require NCCAOM certification to gain licensure.

As an acupuncturist, what trends do you see happening in the future for our profession?

FMP: I see acupuncture, gua sha and cupping in the news headlines more than ever before. I’d say the trend is, ‘the word is getting out’. At the same time, other healthcare professions are encroaching into acupuncture and its associated modalities. It’s important to educate the public as much as it is to promote to the public.

Thank you for sharing so much about the incredible work you do. Please let us know a little about yourself. What are some activities you enjoy outside of work? Do you have any hobbies or talents you’d like to share?

FMP: I continue my Qigong practice daily, along with daily exercise. I like to hike, run, cycle and motorcycle. I’m an avid reader; history, biographies, Chinese Medicine (lots of that), philosophy and sometimes a little fiction.

We hope you enjoyed this edition of the
NCCAOM Diplomate E-News You Can Use!