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2020 Year in Review Newsletter


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From the Chair

Dear Colleagues,


“Together—one of the most inspiring words in the English language. Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress;
working together is success.”
– Edward Everett Hale


As we enter the stillness and conserving energies of the water season, I have been reflecting on how this year has forced us to embrace its qualities: the ability to change, flow and overcome obstacles.  I’ve also been thinking about how as a profession those collective energies have played out.

This month’s newsletter features a “2020 ASA Year in Review” illustrating that our profession has not only survived 2020’s challenges, but courageously found ways to thrive and better position ourselves to face a new year. For this, I am grateful to all of our state association members, committee chairs and members, and fellow board members for their leadership, fortitude, and focus during this trying year. I am also grateful to NCCAOM, CCAOM, ACAOM, all of our AOM faculty and students as well as our industry vendors for their unrelenting dedication to buoy the profession amid closures, and delays, in spite of reduced staffing, supplies and budgets. 

Lastly, I am grateful for every one of you for your audacity to believe in the power of our medicine and  charging forward with your practices in the face of uncertainty.  Our profession deserves a huge pat on the back and a big warm hug for making it through.  We have all earned this season of rest and restoration.  Please make space to give yourself some extra care and attention. 

I look forward to continuing our journey together into the bright and shiny new year. Wishing you and your loved ones a joyous holiday season! 

Best,


Olivia Hsu Friedman
ASA Chair



Major ASA Developments

ASA 2020 Year in Review


January
  1. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announces decision to cover acupuncture for chronic low back pain. ASA NCCAOM Statement
  2. Lovell Grant $175K awarded to ASA to begin US Acupuncture Profession Planning Project.
 
February
  1. ASA Board of Directors (BOD) meets for first 3-day live retreat in Chicago, Illinois
  2. ASA gets a new post office box address: 712 H Street NE Suite 1189, Washington, DC 20002   fax number is 202-544-1006
  3. ASA creates a Covid 19 Resources page
March
  1. COVID-19 lock down/shelter at home begins
  2. ASA 2020 Conference cancelled due to COVID-19
  3. ASA Herbal Medicine Committee creates Best Practices in Herbal Medicine during Covid 19
  4. First COVID-19 Virtual Town Hall For Acupuncturists with CSOMA, ASA, NCCAOM, Lhasa OMS & AAC (March 24, 2020)
  5. ASA Statement Contextualizing “Essential Healthcare Providers” and “Essential Healthcare Services” during the COVID-19 Deluge
  6. ASA/NCCAOM deploys State of Your Practice Survey
 
April
  1. ASA partners with NCCAOM to produce 14 weeks of Covid-19 related town halls affording 28 free CEUs/PDAs  April 1-July 1 
          April 7, 2020 Federal stimulus packages and all related legislation that discusses                 extensions or special accommodations for small businesses
          April 14, 2020 COVID-19 Impact Update for Students, Schools and Faculty                         Members
          April 22, 2020 The State of the Profession Post COVID-19 & Phase IV of federal                 relief legislation
          April 29, 2020 Hospital, COVID-19 Registry, CARES IV
          May 6, 2020 PRC’s Expert Insight for Patients with COVID-19 & Guidelines for                     Going Back to Work (CCAOM)
          May 13, 2020 US Hospitals: Current State of Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine   
          May 20, 2020 Malpractice and Liability During Covid-19
          May 27, 2020 Covid-19 Clinical Trials in China, HerbCareUS: Public Herbal                         Donations during Covid-19 & Filling the Gap      
          June 3, 2020 Acupuncture in the Veterans Health Administration & Going Back to               Work 
          June 10, 2020 Mental Health: Treating the Aftermath of COVID-19
          June 17, 2020 How Europe and Australia handled Covid19 and Going Back to Work
          June 24, 2020 MEDICARE: Should L.Ac.’s Pursue Inclusion
          July 1, 2020  Workforce Survey Results: How Covid19 Impacted the Acupuncture                Profession

13. ASA Whistleblower Policy and Procedure developed
14. ASA Non-discrimination Policy and Procedure developed
15. ASA Mentorship program launched

May

16. 5th Annual ASA Council Congress May 1 via Zoom
17. Bylaws amendment approved for 2 Vice Chair positions (VC Operations & VC Public           Policy) 
18. Bylaws amendment approved for Immediate Past Chair term of 1 year with additional         years optional and subject to IPC and Board of Directors (BOD) discretion. 
19. New executive leadership team seated May 1: Chair, Olivia Hsu Friedman; Vice Chair         Operations, Zeyiad Elias; Vice Chair Public Policy, Amy Mager; Secretary, Christine             Cronin; and Treasurer, Jason Bussell. Dr. David Miller moves to Immediate Past Chair,       LiMing Tseng and Candace Sarges move to Board Member-at-Large positions.
20. New BOD organizational structure formed with all board members serving as liaisons         to specific ASA committee(s).
21. 2020-21 Strategic Planning, Brand Development, and Marketing Communications               project begins with TBI Communications as part of Lovell Grant 
22. Collaborated in the NUNM/Helfgott Research Institute’s Traditional, Complementary           and Integrative Health and Medicine COVID-19 Support Registry

June

23. ASA/NCCAOM joint response to the CDC April 2020 request for comments on                     managing acute and chronic pain [85 FR 21441]
24. ASA/NCCAOM produces Covid Workforce survey including over 5000 respondents,           largest response rate for profession
25. Academic Consortium becomes fiscal sponsor for ASA/Lovell project
26. Medicare Education Brief created by ASA Medicare Task Force and disseminated to all       ASA states 
27. NCCAOM ASA Cultural Competency Task Force is established.
 
July

28. Medicare Q& A: Ask the Experts live event – July 9
29. First Quarterly Council Meeting – July 23
30. ASA Council votes in favor of pursuing licensed acupuncturists as practitioners in                 Medicare 
31. Charis Wolf voted into Board Member-at-Large position
32. Committee charters complete
33. ASA/NCCAOM joint comments to National Center for Complementary and Integrative         Health 2021-26 Strategic Plan Comments 

August

34. ASA/NCCAOM Cultural Competence Task Force produces first Town                                   Hall:  Conversations Around Racism, Bias, Equity and the Acupuncture                               Profession providing 2 free CEU’s
35. ASA newsletter introduces new Table of Contents
36. ASA/NCCAOM Medicare strategic discussions begin

September

37. ASA Committee application and process launched.  Nom Com now accepting new               applicants.
38. Dr. David Miller speaks on behalf of ASA at Equity in Access to Comprehensive                   Integrative Pain Management for People with Chronic Pain Symposium sponsored by         AACIPM                                                  
39. ASA/NCCAOM produce continued COVID-19 Economic Relief for Acupuncturists

October

40. Declaration of Acupuncture Medicine Day in the states of VermontDistrict of                       ColumbiaMassachusettsMichigan, & Wisconsin
41. Acupuncture Medicine Day - A Day of Diversity and Community in Acupuncture video         event providing 4 free CEU’s with over 6000 registrants. Acupuncture Medicine Day             Video Contest winners by category:

     Acupuncture Safety during COVID
     Winner 
Earley Wellness Group COVID-19 Protocol by Deborah     Earley 

     Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Acupuncture
     Winner: 
The Point Is by Louis Jin

     Acupuncture Accessibility and Community Engagement
     Winner:  
Bringing Acupuncture Medicine to the Underserved by Dan Wunderlich 
 
42. Second Quarterly Council Meeting – Oct 15
43. NCCAOM approved the ASA Mentorship Program for PDA points under the                         Professional Enhancement Activity (PE-AT) category - Oct 16 
44. Board Member at Large Candace Sarges steps down after nearly a decade of                     voluntary leadership service to the profession.
45. Hawaii Oriental Medicine and Acupuncture Assoc & Arkansas Society of Licensed               Acupuncturists voted into ASA membership (pending paperwork)
46. Research committee formed
47. The ASA provides formal commentary to CMS regarding proposed devaluations                 changes in our RVUs as well as the proposal to crosswalk the acupuncture codes               97810-97814 codes with the needle insertion without injection codes 20561 & 20562.
48. Governance committee formed
49. ASA’s Comment on CMS’ Medicare Program on CY 2021 Payment Policies under the         Physician Fee Schedule

November

50. American Academy of Medical Acupuncture/ASA sign memorandum of understanding        (MOU)
51. Medicare Roadmap Infographic produced by ASA/NCCAOM Mina Larson (NCCAOM)         and Olivia Hsu Friedman (ASA) present infographic at CSOMA legislative town hall.
52. NCCAOM/ASA sign (MOU)
53. Acupuncture Today Article: Recognizing Acupuncturists in Medicare
54. ASA appears on Who Wants to be a Millionaire?
55. Medicare/End of Year update Town Hall 

December

56. Chanta Van Laanen and Jessica Gregory from ASA Insurance Committee approved to       serve on AMA CPT HCPAC Advisory Committee on behalf of ASA
57. CMS responded and chose to keep codes 97810-97814 at the current valuation while         recognizing the differences between the relative value of these codes.  CMS also                 remarked how ASA’s comments impacted the reviewers who decided not to crosswalk         codes 97810-96814 with codes 20561 & 20562
58. The ASA Insurance Committee worked with VA contractors TriWest and Optum who           were sending authorizations for 2 units of acupuncture, while the VA itself states they           follow CMS MUE guidelines which allow for 3.  Confirmation received from the VA and         Standardized Episode of Care (SEOC) to be changed to state 3 units instead of 2.
59. The ASA collaborated with the Acupuncture Society of New York on their press                   release Essential Health Care Operations: Licensed Acupuncturists Respond to                   Supreme Court Concurring Opinion on 1st Amendment Free Exercise Clause
60. Medicare Task Force begins development
 

 

 


What We Are Doing Now
Advocacy Committee
Chair, Jennifer Broadwell


The Advocacy Committee is now fully seated.Current members are: Jennifer Broadwell (chair), Amy Mager (board liaison), Jason Sargis, Nell Smircina, Tuesday Wasserman, and Michelle Wright. We are creating a multifaceted advocacy campaign to introduce Licensed Acupuncturists to our congressional representatives and highlight our vital role in US healthcare. This is the first step in our grassroots advocacy campaign. We continue to meet with ASA and NCCAOM leadership to develop and implement our Medicare Recognition strategy. Please stay tuned for the latest developments on ASAcu.org, reading our updates in Acupuncture Today, and be in touch with your state associations, and here in the newsletter.

External Communications Committee
Chair, Lindy Camardella

The external Communication Committee is looking for new participants to join the committee and be ready as we move forward. Do you want to work on connecting with other people in the field and letting people know how great the ASA is and that they should join their state association? Maybe you would rather educate other professionals about the field of acupuncture and what it has to offer? Or lastly, do you want to inform the public about acupuncture and our amazing practitioners?

There are a lot of places for everyone. Please let us know if you are interested.
 

Governance Committee
Chair, David Bock

The ASA Governance Committee welcomes 2 new members, Steve Malins and Heather Shultz. We are still looking for more members to help create policies and procedures for the ASA. There are many areas that need work. Current efforts are on some proposals in relation to the ASA Code of Conduct. If you have any interest in helping, would like more information, or know someone at the state level who might have the skills we need, please contact David Bock.
 
 

Herbal Committee
Chair, Linda Robinson-Hidas

Warning letters have been going out to practitioners from the Food and Drug Administration ( FDA) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). These letters are in the public record. Please do not claim to treat or prevent biomedical diseases, especially COVID-19. For guidance on how to be compliant, please use Best Practices for Prescribing Herbal Medicine During the COVID-19 Crisis.
 
https://www.asacu.org/2020/03/best-practices-for-prescribing-herbal-medicine-during-the-covid-19-crisis/
 
Here is one of the stories from an acupuncturist who received a letter (name withheld by request). Letter is printed verbatim below: 
 
In March 2020, I published a blog post that shared information I had learned from herbal seminars presented by leading herbalists, Jake Fratkin and John Chen, which applied to respiratory infections and specifically discussed formulas used in China to treat COVID-19.  Some formulas where named (in the webinars and in my blog post) which are approved as safe, dietary supplements in the USA (such as Jade Windscreen) and are widely available to consumers here. 
 
Apparently, I naively crossed some line in my discussion of these formulas, which triggered a warning letter from the FTC alleging that I was making unsubstantiated medical claims.  I immediately complied with their requests and removed the blog post, and searched through my website for anything else that might be offensive. 
 
The FTC seemed to mainly be concerned that I was selling these formulas, which is ironic because most of the patent formulas mentioned are not things that I stock at my clinic.  And in any case, I don’t sell herbs to the general public.  The post was entirely an informational guide. 
 
As a side note, all of this happened during the same week that Trump was suggesting that disinfectant and light might be used inside the body to treat COVID-19 and destroy the virus. 
 
I never heard anything more from the FTC once I complied with their request.  Unfortunately, this warning letter triggered several things in May and June:
 
1.  I received an email from my merchant services provider letting me know that I was on some FTC list, and asking me to let them know if I had complied with the FTC’s request.  (I did as requested, replied to merchant services and that was the end of that.)
 
2.  I was served by the Department of Justice in my state with an Investigative Demand.   It asked for detailed and specific replies to questions.  I hired an expensive attorney, spent a lot of time preparing the replies, and then as we were about to turn them in to the DoJ, they came back and offered me an Assurance of Voluntary Compliance.  This basically was a way for them to avoid having to spend time reading all the stuff that I wrote, by simply having me sign something saying that I admit to no violation, but promise that I will never ever say anything again about treating COVID-19. 
 
At that point, I started hearing from other acupuncturists and herbalists in my state who had received similar letters.  All of us were of course small clinics with no idea how to deal with any of this, and not a lot of financial or legal resources. 
 
Eventually, I got in touch with the AHPA (American Herbal Products Association), took a seminar with them, and got on their mailing list.  It was an eye-opening lesson to realize what regulatory issues the herbal manufacturers have to deal with all the time.  It also made realize that the FTC and FDA are issuing dozens of warning letters every week about false medical claims, especially as regards COVID-19.  I think that because of the pandemic, they are really scraping the web aggressively for ANYTHING that looks like it might be a fraudulent medical claim.  It is their job, and yes there are truly fraudulent claims out there.
 
In the FTC warning letters, they excerpt sentences that they can use to make an allegation of a false claim.  Some of these allegations might not hold up to scrutiny, but it doesn’t matter.  Just getting the warning letter is enough.  They are the government and we are just little practitioners.  The Deep Pockets win. 
 
3.  In the midst of dealing with the Investigative Demand, I also got a letter from the Medical Board opening an investigation in June.  Their interests and requests were a little different from the Department of Justice, and focused on whether or not patients had been harmed.  I replied with their requests, and I have not heard anything since.  I suspect that I will eventually hear something, but they are probably dealing with dozens of practitioners in my situation and it’s a low priority.
 
I wish I could tell you that I feel bad about this - but why is it that Trump can promote unproven and dangerous treatments (like disinfectant and hydroxychloroquine) and yet herbalists can't suggest the use of a safe product that is already available, and is used in other countries to prevent or treat?
 
Altogether, it’s been a headache and a trip to the school of hard knocks.  Hopefully, not to be repeated.
 
(name withheld by request)



Insurance Committee
Chair, Mori West


As previously announced, the Insurance Committee was invited by a major Utilization and Management company to comment on proposed acupuncture guidelines. They reviewed our comments and invited us back for further collaboration.  They have offered to help us with training our members on the use of various outcome assessment tests, and we GLADLY accepted this offer!
 

In October, we followed up with the VA in response to providers who said that they had received authorizations allowing for only two units.  We sent a letter to the VA asking for clarification, since the VA CCN program follows CMS guidelines which allows for three units of acupuncture. Although we never received a response from the VA, we did hear from TriWest who sent an announcement stating they are following the guidelines to allow for three units!  (Somehow, TriWest got the nudge they needed!)
 
We are continuing to follow up with the state liaisons to share insurance-related information with their association members.  We advised them to let their members know about the positive response to our inquiry about the number of units.  We also provided instructions on how to request reconsideration of incorrectly paid claims at CMS rates by TriWest prior to the June 24, 2020 implementation.  (We included a copy of the response we received from the VA documenting this date for inclusion in their requests.) In addition, we regularly respond to questions and concerns brought to the insurance committee by the state liaisons.
 
Finally, the ASA was represented at the first ever American Specialty Health (ASH) Acupuncture Professional Affairs Healthcare Advisory Committee (PAHAC) with both Amy Mager and Mori West in attendance.
 
In closing, we announce with pride that one of our own, Chanta Van Laanen, DACM, Dipl OM (NCCAOM), LAc, of Wisconsin, was the recipient of a full scholarship from Cigna Healthcare for an MBA in healthcare administration. She has been an incredible leader in our profession. Among her many roles, Chanta is a committed volunteer on the ASA Insurance Committee and the Wisconsin Society of Acupuncturists (WISCA) and has been appointed by the ASA to serve on the AMA CPT Editorial Panel along with Jessica Gregory, also on our insurance committee.  We want to wish her our deepest congratulations on this exciting opportunity!


Mentorship Program
Chair, Christine Cronin

Thank you for sending potential mentors our way. It is greatly appreciated. We still need more mentors, especially herbalists and Five Element Practitioners.

However, what is most important is if you are an acupuncturist who loves sharing what you have learned AND appreciate that there are no tests involved - please know you are needed. If you are interested or know someone who is, please contact me at secretary@asacu.org.


Nominating Committee
Chair, Sarah Prater

This month the Nominating Committee finished work on streamlining the  committee application process. We spent some time bringing the other committee chairs up to speed and answering questions about the process to help speed up placement of committee members throughout the ASA committees. We plan to continue open conversation with the other committees to improve the process as we grow as an association. We received 3 committee applications this month. 

The Nominating Committee is currently looking for at least one additional member. Anyone interested in joining an ASA committee should fill out this application. 

We are currently vetting one new state association and hope to have them ready for a council vote at the next ASA meeting scheduled on 1/28/2021. We are expecting two additional state applications by the end of the month and hope to have them complete and vetted in time for a council vote in January. We have also reached out to 7 additional states to encourage them to join and to answer any questions about the process.

If your state would like to be considered for a council vote, the Nom Com needs completed applications by the end of November to allow time for vetting and a bylaws-required 30 day comment period before the council vote.  If your state would like to join, please fill out this application

We are still looking to fill one ASA board position. If you are interested or would like to nominate someone, please reach out to NomCom@ASAcu.org for more information. 

Jennifer Broadwell is continuing work on collecting documentation from states that were grandfathered into the ASA. We are specifically looking for bylaws, incorporation documents, and tax status documentation. If your state has not sent in your documentation please reach out to NomCom@ASAcu.org

The Nominating Committee is also working on some updates to our Representative Guidelines for state delegates to help keep conversation on the list serve productive and focused on our larger goals. We plan to have these for council feedback at our January meeting.
 

Research Committee
Chair, Lisa Conboy

We are continuing to reach out to potential Research Committee members.  Please apply if you are interested!  Or contact research@asacu.org.

We are also collecting and rating options for models to support research oversight (IRB) for acupuncture science.




Student Committee
Chair, Alex Russell

The student committee met on Tuesday Nov. 17th. We invited four new members and focused on overviewing the structure of state and national organization, our committee’s charter, who we are, what we do, our current projects, the ASA Mentorship program, and our leadership opportunities. We also discussed how to get more students involved and active on state and national levels but also within our committee. We discussed the Medicare Roadmap and that our committee will be standing by to help when needed. We encouraged those who are interested in advocacy to reach out to the Advocacy Committee. The committee talked about the NCCAOM Student Webinar on Nov 10th and the changes/updates that affect students. 

Our committee is currently seeking help with an all encompassing Title IX Roadmap. We hope this all-encompassing project will explain the reporting structure(s) on a state-by-state basis for students to have a resource and guidebook to move through the Title IX complaint process. In this we are working with NAA International to develop training for students on what interpersonal violence actually is without being a remedial course. Our committee is also currently looking at a proposal for a new project I AM AN ACUPUNCTURIST that will bring light to our profession and have the opportunity to feature students and LAcs.

If you’re a student or a state association who would like to connect with us the student committee please email students@asacu.org. Students interested in joining our committee visit the ASA’s website to fill out a committee application. We need more volunteers to help with the work we are doing. 

Follow us on Instagram @asastudents



Committee Openings
Are you looking for ways to serve the profession?

The following committees have openings - please join us!

External Communications Committee: 1 graphic designer or someone who loves to educate people about our medicine
Governance Committee: 5 committee position openings
Membership Committee: 1 chair position, 3 committee positions open
Nominating Committee: 1 committee position open
Student Committee: 5 leadership positions open

Anyone interested in joining an ASA committee should fill out this application.


ASA Joint Developments
The NCCAOM ASA Acupuncture Medicine Task Force honors the 50th Anniversary of the People's Detox Center at Lincoln Hospital, established on November 10, 1970, by the Young Lords, Black Panthers, and the Health Revolutionary Unity Movement, where a methadone program and education were provided for heroin detoxification. In 1973, acupuncture treatments were added, making it the first US clinic to offer acupuncture detoxification. More information can be found in Elinor Mitchell's book: Fighting Drug Abuse with Acupuncture (1995).


Visit our website


A Special Thanks to Our Sponsors
 
 
State Association Updates

California


 

CSOMA's 2020 - A Year of Advocacy & Education 

- CSOMA grew practitioner membership by 28% in 2020.

- CSOMA grew corporate membership to include 18 organizations.

https://csomaonline.org/member-benefits/#myaccount

- Hosted eight (8) CE classes (FREE for members!) in 2020.

https://netofknowledge.com/Discover/Event/390c779a-4914-4198-8fbd-26859c6d8823?h=dab08a0e-71a3-4229-afa3-6971b0eb0712

- Hosted "Covid-19 Virtual Town Hall for Acupuncturists" for 6,000 participants - March 23, 2020.

https://csomaonline.org/covid-19-virtual-town-hall-for-acupuncturists/

- Worked with California Dept of Public Health (CDPH) to include LAcs as "Essential Workers" - July 21, 2020

https://csomaonline.org/csoma-requests-cdph-to-list-acupuncturists-as-essential-critical-infrastructure-workers/

- Voted unanimously to change corporate name - July 20, 2020.

https://csomaonline.org/csoma-board-of-directors-votes-unanimously-to-change-corporate-name/

- Hired Lobbyist David Quackenbush - August 26, 2020.

https://csomaonline.org/csoma-hires-sacramento-lobbyist-david-quackenbush

- Published Journal of Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine (JAIM) - November 2, 2020.

"Advancing Care: The Emergence of Acupuncture at U.S. Hospitals." (Printed & mailed thousands to LAcs, hospitals and integrative medicine centers across the country. Digital reader coming soon!) 

- Hosted "CSOMA Advocacy Town Hall" for 200 participants - November 11, 2020

https://csomaonline.org/acupuncture-advocacy-town-hall/







2020 CalATMA Year in Review

CalATMA succeeded in further work in the challenging task of unifying our state’s large and diverse group of licensed acupuncturists.  Membership surged in our summer outreach, followed by a successful annual meeting and statewide election for a new Board of Trustees (BoT) in October.  26 candidates competed for 11 seats; 87% of eligible members voted online

Immediately after electing Neal Miller as President, the BoT officially adopted a comprehensive nondiscrimination policy: “CalATMA does not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, color, national origin, cultural background, ancestry, religion, sex, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, marital status, physical or mental disability, citizenship, primary language or immigration status.”

The issue of replacing the California Acupuncture Licensing Exam (CALE), in total or in part, with the NCCAOM national certification exam continues to be controversial and divisive in California.  Since recent changes in some Federal programs continue to make NCCAOM certification more advantageous than before, the BoT decided to do more research and present more information to assist members to make a well-informed decision in the best interest of California practitioners, students, and consumers.

New legislative relationships are being actively developed by the new legislative committee. A two-year legislative strategy will be finalized in the first quarter of 2021.  Currently, Assembly and Senate bills have been completely focused on response to actions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. AB-888, requiring options for non-opioid treatments including acupuncture, received early support from CalATMA.  It still has a chance of moving forward in the 2021 session. The new BoT confirmed these broad legislative goals:
  • Oppose acupuncture being done by physical therapists, athletic trainers, nurses, and other healthcare providers who are not exempt under current California law.  Trustee Josh Margolis heads the task force to prepare an official position paper.
  • Change the current scope of practice terminology “Asian massage” to “manual therapy.”
  • Clarify the legislative status of bloodletting in our scope of practice and support definitive inclusion.
  • Discussions have commenced with a top legislative consultant in Sacramento to represent us in our lobbying efforts toward these goals.

The Insurance committee will be chaired by Mori West and co-chaired by Trustee Sun “Sunny” Lee.  After assembling their team, their goals include increasing practitioner access and addressing reimbursement disparities in the private, group, Workers’ Compensation, Medicare, state MediCal, and Veterans Administration insurance programs.

Member Benefits and Student Affairs committees will be chaired by Trustees Aaron Lee and Sean Gardner.  Their planned activities include recommendations regarding a fee schedule which supports the multiyear strategic plan, development of a substantial member benefits program to provide economic benefits, and then coordinate a statewide membership drive.

Trustees Farshid Namin, Yueying Li, and HuaBing Wen will be heading up the Academic Education and Research committee. Planned benefits to be recommended include some free CEUs via monthly webinars, a Spring Symposium, Fall Annual Meeting, and in house classes offered in four languages.


Colorado
The AAC is excited to host Mori West in a live conference on:
Dec 12 - Bulletproof Insurance Billing - newbies welcome, experienced billers have a lot to gain
Dec 13 - Exams and Documentation - how to earn and keep money
 
Register now to take advantage of the Early Bird pricing: https://acucol.com/event-4033810
 
"What's the difference between this and Mori's pre-recorded seminars?"
The conference Mori is offering the AAC, at a deeply discounted rate, is an advanced in-depth combination of two of her recorded workshops - During this live conference, she will be guiding experienced billers through nitty gritty billing and best practices, while also bringing us up to speed regarding what we need to know to respond to billing changes in 2020-2021.

Illinois


We just published our newsletter.  There are articles that are of interest to all, even outside of the state of Illinois. There are some great references pertaining to COVID-19.
 

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1jF6DUg0HUvqfCwfJmBHURihbLdm1ppR2/view?usp=sharing

Huge thanks to Roxan Salvato for organizing!

Student Memberships are now FREE and we are offering a class this Sunday, December 6th at 1PM helping soon to be grads and recent grads prepare for practice and ensure they aren’t missing key steps.

https://www.ilsacu.org/events/preparing-for-practice/


Maryland






 
Maryland Acupuncture Society proudly presents:
 
The Stress Code for Acupuncturists
Distance Learning Online Course - 2 NCCAOM PDA (CEU)
 



Created and Presented By: Josh Solomon, L.Ac., M.Ac., Dipl. Ac. NCCAOM
 
To Learn More and to Register Visit: https://www.marylandacupuncturesociety.org/courses/the-stress-code-for-acupuncturists-2-pda/
 
 
What is “­The Stress Code,” and how can it help me, and my patients better cope with stress?
 
The Stress Code is 5-step process for dissolving stress, developed by acupuncturist, author, teacher, and creator of The Stress Code Academy, Josh Solomon. The Stress Code is informed, in part, by Josh’s extensive experience as a Yoga Nidra Instructor and certified coach (Center for Releasing), as well as his studies with Daoist Master Jung Hua Lee, Esoteric Acupuncture Master Dr. Mikio Sankey, and his initiation into Isha Kriya Yoga by Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev. The Stress Code can be applied on the spot to dissolve stress in seconds once learned, or as a deeper meditation practice!
 
What will I get with this course?
 
This brand new course, brought to you by Josh Solomon’s Stress Code Academy, an online school that teaches stress reduction, features: 
 
  • 2-hours of “do it yourself” video instruction designed to help Acupuncturists reduce their stress levels and access their centered, opened, relaxed experience (CORE). 
  • 4-modules plus 1-bonus module (Keys for Dissolving Stress). 
  • Downloadable “Instant Gratification Meditations” (IGMs), 3-5 minute audios that guide the user through integrating The Stress Code process into their daily lives. Morning, afternoon, and evening IGM’s available. 
  • 27-minute deep guided yoga nidra CORE meditation (downloadable). 
  • Stress Code Academy Facebook community access. 
 
Questions? Contact us at events@marylandacupuncturesociety.org

Massachusetts

Acupuncture Society of Massachusetts is submitting legislation for the fifth time to mandate the coverage of acupuncture under all health insurance plans in the Commonwealth for the treatment of pain, PTSD, nausea, and opiate addiction. Our bill advanced very far this year and was sidelined during the pandemic. We are hoping this will be our year to allow all patients in the Commonwealth to determine and utilize Acupuncture as part of their evidence-based non-opioid treatments for pain.

We are also submitting a scope of practice for dry needling as Allied Health Professionals are practicing dry needling in the Commonwealth without it being either specifically in scope or specifically out of scope. While the Board of Health is going is allows this to occur, that does not change the fact that there needs to be meaningful standards in place. Right now, no standards exist for dry needling. Currently, practitioners are allowed to practice dry needling with no didactic standards, no clinical standards, and no third-party national psychometric testing.


North Carolina

The NC Society of Acupuncture and Asian Medicine hired a new bipartisan lobbyist to represent us in the state legislature and to assist us in educating the public on the benefits of acupuncture.  

 

We also spent this year reorganizing our Board of Directors to be more committee based to reflect the various changes in the professional, political and educational environment nationally and in NC by eliminating the regional support through Chapter Representatives.  We are looking forward to strengthening this change in 2021. 

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