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Acupuncture Today – October, 2011, Vol. 12, Issue 10


By Marilyn Allen, Editor-at-Large

Here is the latest acupuncture news and happenings from around the world to help you stay "on point" with the profession. This month, there is exciting news about an exclusive visit from the "Father of Acupuncture," as well as from acupuncture schools across the country. Expansions, promotions, events and more.

Special Visit

Next month, Emperor's College of Traditional Oriental Medicine will be hosting the honorable Dr. Shi Xue-Min, also known as the "Father of Acupuncture," for a 2-day CEU seminar in Santa Monica, Calif., on November 19 and 20.

In this exclusive West Coast seminar, Dr. Shi will lecture on Xing Nao Kai Qiao stroke rehabilitation and prevention therapy, an effective acupuncture protocol for stroke patients he developed in the early 1970s at Tianjin Hospital in China.

Dr. Shi Xue-Min is known as China's Treasure for his remarkable accomplishments in Chinese medicine. His leitmotiv is "Health is the greatest wealth for human beings." Following his vision, Dr. Shi established the largest worldwide acupuncture and teaching hospital - the First Teaching Hospital of Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, where he serves as honorary president today.

Since the early 1970s, more than two million stroke patients have been treated at the hospital using Dr. Shi's XNKQ method. Dr. Shi himself has performed clinical treatment and research on more than 100,000 stroke patients. Dr. Shi is the recipient of numerous awards and has published more than 30 articles and authored 40 books. For more information about his visit, go to

At the White House

Licensed California acupuncturist Haro Ogawa, who works for the San Francisco Giants, had the privilege of meeting President Barack Obama when he joined the Giants on a special visit to the White House following their historic win at the 2010 World Series. Ogawa got a chance to greet President Obama who was joined by a number of California lawmakers, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, along with Giants great Willie Mays. Haro Ogawa, MSOM, LAc, CMT, ATC, serves as the team acupuncturist for the Giants. In addition, he has previously worked for the New York Mets and privately for the Golden State Warriors basketball team, NASCAR drivers and the Japanese national baseball team.

Celebrating 100 Years

On October 15, The New England School of Acupuncture (NESA), the first school of acupuncture in the United States, will honor the school's founder, Dr. James Tin Yau So's 100th birthday. In his spirit, NESA will invite students, alumni, faculty and friends to celebrate the enormous contributions Dr. So has made to his many patients, students and the field of acupuncture education.

NESA's 35 years of academic excellence began with Dr. So and his missionary practice of acupuncture. This historical lineage, coupled with the ever-growing contemporary applications from his legacy, is threaded through the many accomplishments of the school. For example, NESA's ground-breaking research is studying the use of acupuncture as a treatment for the many symptoms of Gulf War Illness. NESA has a $1.2 million grant from the Department of Defense for this study - the first acupuncture school to receive DOD funding. Dr. So's mission to bring acupuncture to diverse groups of patients flourishes at the school today. NESA recently created an Acupuncture Hospice Residency Program with All Care Visiting Nurse Association and Hospice, one of New England's oldest home care organizations dedicated to improving the quality of patient's lives. This innovative program is the first of its kind in New England and was developed collaboratively with All Care to offer licensed acupuncturists the opportunity to share their knowledge and expertise while becoming a critical part of the hospice interdisciplinary group made up of doctors, nurses and clergy. This group of end-of-life providers is crucial to the comfort and peace of the patient and incorporating acupuncture as a key element in pain and other symptom management during hospice is a welcome change. 

NESA also created a residency program at Boston Medical Center fostering tremendous opportunity for acupuncture to be a part of an integrative model of care in a major urban hospital setting. The BMC physicians discussed the Western medical perspectives on health care with NESA acupuncturists which enabled them to broaden their knowledge and experience in integrative care.

Funding For Doctoral Programs

The Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM) got candidacy status from the U.S. Department of Education for their doctoral program of acupuncture. This means the schools that have already been accredited for their doctoral program can now get federal loans for their doctoral programs.

ACAOM is the national accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education to accredit Master's-level programs in the acupuncture and Oriental medicine profession. As an independent body, ACAOM accredits first professional Master's degree and professional Master's level certificate and diploma programs in acupuncture and first professional Master's degree and professional Master's level certificate and diploma programs in Oriental medicine with a concentration in both acupuncture and herbal therapies. The Commission fosters excellence in acupuncture and Oriental medicine education by establishing policies and standards that govern the accreditation process for acupuncture and Oriental medicine programs. Currently, ACAOM has more than 60 schools and colleges with accredited or candidacy status.

Yo San Students Back From China

This past April, a highly motivated group of Yo San students and alumni spent two weeks in Chengdu, China, participating in an intensive training program in TCM Gynecology. The group, comprising DAOM candidates Lori Deutsch, Paula Kunkel, Gila Peled and Cynthia Splies, along with YSU alumni Aryani Boedisantoso (class of 2011) and Monica Sarrat (class of 2004), was led by Yo San's Dean of Academic & Clinical Affairs Dr. Lawrence Lau. This two-week intensive program was jointly organized by Yo San University (YSU) and Chengdu University of Traditional Chinese Medicine (CDUTCM). Situated in Chengdu, the capital city of Sichuan province in China, CDUTCM is one of the oldest and most prestigious universities of traditional Chinese medicine in China. The two-week YSU intensive program was specifically developed to fulfill the requirements of the YSU DAOM specialty in Reproductive Medicine. All of the following were included: participation in outpatient clinical sessions, in-patient ward rounds, didactic lectures, small-group tutorials and discussions, and acupuncture demonstrations at both the CDUTCM First Affiliated TCM Hospital, as well as the CDUTCM Second Affiliated TCM Hospital (also known as the Sichuan Institute of Reproductive Health, which specializes in an integrative approach to Reproductive Medicine). Reproductive medicine is particularly significant in Chengdu right now where there currently is a huge government sponsored focus. The 2008 Sichuan earthquake resulted in more than 5000 families losing their sole child. Since this tragedy, the Chinese government has embarked on a massive program to assist affected families/mothers hoping to re-build their families. A combination of both TCM therapy and western medical interventions are being simultaneously used to support these efforts. During their training in CDUTCM, the Yo San students observed firsthand how TCM is integrated with allopathic Western medicine in the treatment of a variety of conditions in reproductive medicine. "We learned so much in these two weeks, both in terms of the huge number of patients seen, as well as the diversity of clinical cases." said DAOM candidate Cynthia Splies.

At the end of the program, each YSU participant was presented with a formal certificate recognizing their successful completion of this specialized intensive clinical program.

New Program At The Tai Sophia Institute

Designed specifically to meet the needs of acupuncturists treating today's complex women's health issues, Tai Sophia Institute is offering the first program of its kind, a new Post-Master's Certificate in Holistic Women's Health that addresses all phases of a female patient's life cycle. This distinct program delivers a holistic and integrative approach to provide students with an in-depth understanding of the theory, research and clinical techniques relative to puberty, fertility, pregnancy, childbirth, postpartum and menopause through later years.

A faculty of internationally-known experts in the field will lead this 12-credit program, blending Eastern and Western medicine with proven traditional practices and modern science to create a "wisdom through the ages" learning experience. If you are interested in learning more, please visit, or contact the Office of Graduate Admissions at ext. 6647, or email .

Click here for more information about Marilyn Allen, Editor-at-Large.

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