Poll Results for the following Question:
Should medical doctors be allowed to practice acupuncture?
Total Respondents: 677
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Only if they have similar standardized training equal to
an acupuncturists, and pass the NCCAOM.
However a medical doctor who studies chinese medical theory
and acupuncture for a number of hours commensurate with educational requirements
for acupuncturists AND is able to pass the requisite exam for the jurisdiction,
then they should be recognized as competent and be allowed to practice
I believe medical doctors should be permitted to practice
acupuncture only if they have completed a minimum Master's degree in Oriental
Medicine. Poking people with these needles with 1-200 of training is both
dangerous and less effective.
a degree does not automatically mean that someone will be
particularly good or bad at acupuncture
As is well known about the acupuncture community, the amount
of education it takes to understand an 'Eastern' vs. a 'Western' modality
is a minimum of 2 to 3 additional years. This additional education on top
of a Medical (or Naturopathic) Physicians already over-whelming course load
is, well, over-whelming! Besides, the amount of time it takes for an acupuncture
treatment in a busy practicing MD's office is not practical. Many of the
MD's I've heard from do not even want to take that much time with a single
patient, when they could see 5 in the same hour!
A. Noni Muss
MD's should not be allowed to practice acupuncture even if
they have 4,ooo+ hours of acupuncture studies. A brained damaged by medical
training can never be cured or even rehabilitated.
MD's, chiros and others wishing to practice acupuncture should
only do so with the proper training and appropriate certification hours
--- 200-300 hours without theories and principles knowledge about this wonderful
medical art is possibly why there is so much discrepancy with our profession
and conventional practitioners.
As with any other medical practice and modality, only with
proper training should M.D.s be able to perform acupuncture. This standard
should be set by International criteria and not by cultural or political
All doctors should be experienced to perform acupunture,
I was involved in 3 car accidents and for four years could not dress in
the morning and could not stand until midday, I had chiropractice and physiotherapy
treatment and attended a pain management clinic, I was given spinal injections
and pain relief drugs nothing helped, my doctor advised an operation and
I refused he told me there was nothing more that could be done and I would
have to live with the pain. A friend recommended I go to see an acupunturist.
I was treated not with needles but with a laser pressure machine by this
Chinese doctor and after only 6 treatments I was able to attend a gym at
8.30 in the morning all my pain had gone, when I told my doctor he said
it was debatable that this had worked but also could not explain why I no
longer had pain, I have a lot of faith in Chinese medicine and the only
doctor I see now is an acupuncturist.
WOULD YOU CALL A PLUMBER TO FIX YOUR ELECTRIC?????
Unless they have a minimum of 300 hours of specific training
If the M.D. completes the same educational
requirements that I had to complete, well of
course. If I wanted to become an M.D. could I skip
any duplicate classes that I had to take while at
SBU? Probably not. David Brewer
P.S. Marilyn, this is a nice website. I will be
sending in the enhanced locator offer.
I feel that if someone is qualified to practice alternative
medicine, like acupuncture, that they shoudl be able to practice it. If
a medical doctor is not qualified to do so, then they should not be practicing
only if they have enough tcm training,as tcm has nothing to
do with occidental medecine
While I certainly accept that any one with sufficient training
should be allowed to include acupuncture in their medical practice. I have
several problems with the practice of "medical acupuncture" as practiced
by Allopathic Physicians. I also have difficulty with other Medical Boards
allowing the inclusion of acupuncture with 50-100 hrs of training. If these
other medical practicioners wish to add acupuncture to their modalities,
they need to learn the basics of Oriental Medicine to understand proper
point prescription theory. Therefore, I must vote no, with the stipulation
that anyone with a full TCM education should certainly be allowed to practice,
regardless of their primary medical experience.
Yes if they do the correct studies like the rest of the
TCM practitioners. After all, if we were to do a weekend course in general
medicine, I am sure they would object!
MD's should not practice acupuncture without additional training.
The training that qualifies them for their medical practice overlaps with
TCM training, but does not include the specialized knowledge or experience
required for responsible and effective acupuncture. Perhaps they should
be required to fulfill the educational objectives and requirements of TCM
practitioners minus any biomedical education they have already received.
YES. A medical doctor after proper training can definitely
be a better Acupuncturist than a non-medical person. Because, in my openion
knowledge of human anatomy is very essential for the practice in Acupuncture.
This is a conditional "no" on my part. Until and unless M.D.'s
are required to obtain adequate training comparable to any other "specialty"
medicine(far more than a weekend workshop), they should stick to what they
have been trained to do, as should acupuncturists.
NO WAY, WESTERN DOCTORS NO NOTHING ABOUT EASTERN MEDICINE.
THEY THINK THEY KNOW EVERYTHING, GIVEN AN EXAM ON ACUPUNCTURE THEY WOULD
BE BOUND TO FAIL. IT IS A COURSE WORTHY OF FULL TRAINING AND UNDERSTANDING
OF WHICH NO WESTERN DOCTOR HAS. WESTERN DOCTORS NEED TO REALISE THERE OWN
LIMITATIONS, WHICH ARE MANY!
Western Medical doctors do not cover any Eastern Medicine
in there training. Traditional Chinese Medicine is a profession in its own
right and requires rightfully the same amount of dedication and training
that Western Medicine necessitates. There is absolutely no overlap in either
area except for the need to know anatomy thouroughly. Chinese medicine is
a completely different method of healing and requires at least four full
time years of training to become proficient in diagnosing and practising.
To do a course of a few days duration or even a couple of months does in
no way prepare a
Western doctor for practising acupuncture. All the Western doctors I've
met who say they practice acupunture do not know why they are inserting
a needle in a specific point, ( a necessity if they are going to succeed
in practicing properly with results). Nor do they understand differentiation
of syndromes or even what different points are used for on a certain meridian.
An Eastern doctor has just as much to learn in Acupuncture as a Western
doctor! Western doctors can practice acupuncture but only if they have completed
the four year recognised length of a proper course and only then should
be allowed to practice. They give the profession a bad name and I have many
examples of that with patients I treat in my practice who have tried Western
doctors first, only to realise they are lacking in knowledge and then seek
out a properly trained Doctor of Acupuncture. I'll bet if Eastern doctors
did a short course in Western Medicine and started praciticing it there
would be an uproar!!!, for the same reasons.
I THINK THAT EVERY DOCTOR MUST KNOW ALL KINDS TO HEAL THE
PEOPLE BECAUSE THE FIRST PRINCIPLE THAT EVERY DOCTOR HAS IS THE HEALTH OF
M.D.'s should be allowed to practice acupuncture if they
meet the requirements of NCCAOM.
UNLESS----they attend a board certified, state accredited
school and put in the hours required to take the NCCAOM exam. If they are
unwilling to 'do the time', they usually do not have an understanding of
the chinese theory of acupuncture, how and why it works. They therefore
do not serve their patients to the best treatments possible.
MD's should be able to practice acupuncture just like we
should be able to practice medicine: Enroll in a school and go through the
appropriate training and clinical hours.
They should not be allowed to practice without a complete
education in acupuncture and chinese medicine.
go md acupuncture!
Doctor's should be able to practice acupuncture,but only
with proper training. It takes 6 years or more to be a certified acuncturist
in China, and in the West it's much less. This is lax enough... However,
Eastern and Western Medicine will eventually combine (many years in the
future perhaps, but eventually), therefore they should be allowed to practice
The question is too vague. In what context and what type of DR.'s should
Not without appropriate training in theory and point function.
Only if trained and competent in acupuncture procedures.....not
just because they have an all inclusive license.
MD's currently have woefully inadequate standards of training
in acupuncture. MD's arrogantly believe that they are competent to practice
with only 200-300 hours of training, a significant portion of which is offered
on videotape, with a negligible clinical training component. Remarkably,
some states allow MD's to practice acupuncture with NO training. This is
unheard of in any regulated health care field.
There are no accreditation standards to ensure MD's have received adequate
training and no certification processes to ensure that they have acheived
the critical competencies necessary for safe and effective practice. Conversely,
fully trained acupuncturists can only become licensed in most states with
4 full academic years of training from an ACAOM accredited or candidate
program, and passing the rigorous exams administered by the NCCAOM. The
rigor of training and testing is simply absent for MD's seeking to practice
following completion of their 200-300 weekend MD CE courses.
Practically speaking, it is not possible to adequately train a beginning
practitioner (even with a significant western science background) in a strictly
didactic setting with minimal clinical followup or evaluation which is offered
in the 200-300 hour MD training programs. Acupuncture is a comprehensive
sysstem of medicine that cannot be reduced to the few weekend courses that
are promoted by MD's. Beginning practitioners who receive inadequate training
not only jeopardize public safety but contribute to poor clinical outcomes
as well. Patients do not recieve adequate care because diagnostic abilities
and needling techniqes are primitive at best. Also, poorly trained practitioners
may not recognize their limitations thus creating a financial drain for
consumers who continue to come back for care not knowing that the problem
lies with the practitioners skills and not with the medicine.
I have no problem with MD's performing acupuncture as long as they have
received adequate training in accredited programs and have been fully tested
through psychometrically sound certification exams to ensure that they have
achieved the critical competencies necessary for safe and effective practice.
To do any less jeopardizes public safety. If MD's are so arrogant that they
should be able to practice with little or no training, perhaps acupuncturists
should take a few CE courses to prescribe western medicines, perform surgury
or other similar modalities. It is ironic that were this proposed in our
field, MD's would howl concerns for public safety based on inadequate training,
but believe they need little or no training to practice another comprehensive
system of medicine. The words that come to mind regarding this issue are
hipocracy and arrogance on the part of the allopathic medical community.
Only with enough training to warrant competent
Do doctors know everything of human body?
I am currently a student in an acupunture and oriental medicine
program after several years heading in the direction to internal medicine
from a estern approach. There are certain acupuncture treatments that are
not covered under the acupunctrists mal-practice insurance policies that
can be risky for ancupunctrists to treat with the increased population of
people sueing doctors to get rich. In the state of FL of example dental
is not covered, I think that a dentist should be allowed to take acupuncture
regarding his/her profession and be able to help patients coming to his/her
office for specific dental work or problems beyond the scope of the western
approach. I believe that any specialized doctor that has the desire to reach
beyond their current teaching to treat and help cure their patients desreve
this benefit. A dentist that can use acupuncture for anesthesia for a patient
that is allergic to the rx's that they use, benefits the patient highly.
I also think that the schooling should not be taken lightly in a 100 hour
"crash course" of TCM, and that strict guide lines should be taken b/c of
the such different approaches to medicine and theories behind them. I do
however believe that there can be a very well run network between the eastern
and western medical feild but that it has many obstacles to overcome on
both sides and only then we can lay a foundation for the future. Keep in
mind that however that even thought both approaches are vastly different
that both sides are still healers.
I believe they should be able to practice acupuncture only
if they have had the required amount of training and are certified.
In the absence of any evidence that acupuncture is less
effective or less safe, what basis would there be to deny them other than
turf (i.e. insecurity)!? We best keep our own house in order by continuing
to raise our standards or we will lose what we have.
Only those trained in Traditional Chines Medicine should
be allowed to practice. There are too many dishonest doctors who would do
it without formal training just to profit from it.
If they pass the same exam.
with stipulation. MDs or DOs who believe in the therapeutic
effects of meridian release, and who have been adequately trained in acupuncture
techniques, should be allowed and should even insist on incorporating the
same to their clinical practice. Would be more beneficial for their patients
to be able to obtain comprehensive holistic care under the auspice of one
Medical doctors should be required to receive the same acupuncture
training as licensed acupuncturists. I believe it undermines our profession
when medical doctors with only a few hundred hours of acupuncture training
go out and "practice acupuncture".
Only with adequate training in TCM and its related whole-body
Its not a question of whether other health
professionals should be allowed to practice
acupuncture, but on a practitioners qualifications
I think they should be able to practice ONLY if they have
undergone the same type of study and passed the same exams as acupuncturists.
They SHOULD NOT be allowed to practice acupuncture with just the study of
a 200 hour weekend course.
Medical doctors should be able to practice acupuncture limited
to pain management only. This somewhat contradicts current TCM practice
in that MD's are not adequately trained to formulate a TCM diagnosis and
treat accordingly. However it has been my experience that treating pain
using local/distal pts., command pts., empirical pts., and auricular acupuncture,
can help with chronic pain, and MD's can be trained to do this. They are
not,however,trained to diagnose, and treat with acupuncture and herbal medicine
according to current TCM standards ie. internal medicine.
Medically licensed providers should have the minimum
academic training in TCM and a prescribed number of
clinic hours of training documented to practice
acupuncture. Acupuncture is a procedure similiar to
diagnostic procedures and surgery in medicine that
require adequate training, certification, and
privileges to perform efficaciously and safely in a
clinic or hospital.............................
ok very well!
Medical doctors should be allowed to practice acupuncture
ONLY if they fulfill the education requirements that the NCCAOM requires
of anyone wishing acupunture certification; they should need to pass the
national certification exam.
definitely yes, as long as medical doctors follow the same
curriculum as anyone who is preparing for the NCCAOM licensure.
As a non-physician Acupuncturist, I sometimes feel torn
when answering this question, however, I've been treated by medical acupuncturists
who really love and also pursue further studies in acupuncture and Chinese
medicine. I do feel strongly that physicians should be required to take
the same requirements as set forth by the NCCAOM. After all, would it be
fair if I studied 200-300 hours of medical school classes, and then called
myself a 'Doctor'?
yes they should, they have a profession of taking care of
even more threatning things, Acupunture shouldn't be one of them .
I don't think that MD's or any other type of health professional
should be given the privilege to practice acupuncture and/or chiropractic
without having the appropriate degrees (MSOM and DC). I am a chiropractor
with a master's degree in Acupuncture and Chinese medicine. I have a tremendous
amount of respect for the depth and individuality of both professions and
agree with California law requiring DC's to obtain a MSOM in order to practice
acupuncture. That law should be extended to medical doctors as well. Most
acupuncture schools have advanced standing for both MD's and DC's which
significantly cuts down on the amount of time and money needed to complete
the masters' program. MD's in California are encouraged to attend a masters'
program, but most opt for short term weekend courses. It is alarming to
me that many states allow them to practice acupuncture without even minimal
Yes, provided they take and pass the NCCAOM exam, showing
proficiency in diagnostics and therapeutics within a traditional Chinese
medical framework. No Cookbook Quackupuncturists! Western medicine is NOT
In my humble opinion if medical doctors learn how well Acupuncture
works; they will become believers and realize they wont lose business the
patients will come to them for all their medical issues & not feel like
we have to go behind their backs when we want to have Acupuncture & any
other choice using more natural remedies. They must open their thinking
..the trend is changing away from them & now is the time for young doctors
go come onboard. dot
All of us who have invested time and dedication to our medicine
are undermined when it is practiced in limited "system relief" approaches.
The view of TCM medicine in the allopathic circles is not one of admiration.
Rather it seems that they, in their quest to "protect their patients" are
willing to throw out the idea of theory training and exchange it for the
"safety" of the MD doing the "acupuncture." Which is not safe, not even
with the 250hours of training required by some states. Sorry, MD's. You
wouldn't want us to do surgery with that limited of trainging...would you?
If they complete the same type of program that non-medical
people do and successfully pass the national boards.
They should have to fulfill the same training as other s
who practice acupuncture, but it would be an asset to have more people trained
to provide this.
Each profession must practice from within it's own scope
of practice. As an DOM, should I start performing surgery?
No, unless they have the proper education and training in
NOW A DAYS ALLOPATHY IS CALLED'HOLLOWPATHY'...BECAUSE
OF IT'S SYMTOMATIC APPROACH TO SUBSIDE THE SYMPTOMS..
NOT THE DISEASE.BUT ACUPUNCTURE'S APPROACH IS ENTIRELY
DIFFIRENT.WE BELEIVE MAN AS THE WHOLE AND HE HAVE SELF
HEALING POWER TO BE TUNED.WESTRN MINDED DOCTORS WONT
BELEIVE THIS CONCEPT.SO THEY CAN'T NEEDLE WITHOUT
MD's should learn TCM if they want to do acupuncture. What
is called "Medical Acupuncture" is a shallow representation of what TCM
acupuncture is all about.
I don't feel that anyone who has not gone thru the proper
acupuncture training should be allowed to practice acupuncture, regardless
of the degree that they hold...I also don't feel the individual needs to
go thru the intensive course work that most of us have gone thru if they
limit the scope of practice to only acupuncture and not chinese medicine...If
the individual completes the number of hours and passes the national boards
they should be allowed to practice...I myself graduated from Los Angeles
College of Chiropractic and continued on with my education at Samra to recieve
my masters degree...I for one, having gone thru the education and course
work know the amount of time and dedication it takes to learn the art of
acupuncture...Instead of the acupuncturist's waging war against the other
professions that want utilize acupuncture, I believe in my judgement that
by educating the public we will be much furthur ahead, although the acupuncture
associations also do need to take a stance and protect our rights to practice...
Brian N. Hardy, DC, LAc
With proper training from an accredited acupuncture school
and licensing from the state in which they practice.
Medical Doctors should be allowed to practice acupuncture. However, I believe
we need to examine their current education requirements. In addition, there
should be some sort of examination of their knowledge before they are licensed.