Category Archives: Blog

The Biological Plausibility of Acupuncture

(and how it relates to acupuncture malpractice liability insurance)

Acupuncture – an alternative therapy that involves needle insertions into targeted areas of the body – has been making great strides in the medical landscape despite the fact that there are still a lot of people who find it a relatively controversial subject. Why is acupuncture gaining more and more popularity in the medical field and what are the implications of this trend to acupuncture professionals in their practice? Let us see it and find the answer in the perspective of biochemistry.

The biological plausibility of acupuncture

In the recent live event by Mel Hopper Koppelman (executive director of Evidence Based
Acupuncture) for American Acupuncture Council, we have learned a number of important facts about acupuncture based on recent several scientific studies, which prove its biological plausibility.

Here are some facts you need to know:

  • Acupuncture needling triggers release of Adenosine(a chemical that is present in all human cells)
  • Adenosine binds to nerve receptor that sends the signal to the spinal cord and brain
  • In the brain, this regulates functions like digestion, cardiovascular conditions, etc
  • In the higher brain centers, this modulates pain
  • ATP and adenosine start a cascade of biochemical events that affect all tissues and body systems

In other words, performing an acupuncture procedure allows the release of a chemical inside our body called Adenosine, which, when combined with other components to form a compound (AMP, ATP), can be used in treating several conditions, mainly to relieve pain.) This scientific findings remove doubts about the biological plausibility of acupuncture and explain how it can be clinically helpful for such a diverse range of clinical areas.

The implication to acupuncture malpractice liability insurance

These science-backed findings regarding acupuncture have been considered as one of the core factors why more and more individuals are patronizing this alternative treatment. Of course, this would raise some level of controversy from the other side of medical fence,. As a result, acupuncture professionals in their practice, can expect a possible rise in number of complaints, including those coming from the patients themselves. That said, it is imperative that every acupuncture practitioner gets an acupuncture malpractice liability insurance to shield them from possible legal woes – to protect their reputation and their practice.

To learn more about acupuncture malpractice liability insurance, contact the American Acupuncture Council today at (800) 838-0383.

Heads up! Some Exciting Updates on AAC Malpractice Insurance Policy


As a premier provider of acupuncture malpractice insurance policy, your American Acupuncture Council (ACC)is constantly improving its products and services to see to it that the company gives nothing but the best service you can find in the industry today.

True to our words, we have now more coverage built-in standard and we are excited to share with you in this post each and every detail of the added coverage in your policy. So, are you excited? Without further ado, here are the specifics of your more comprehensive policy.

Now you can have the the following benefits:

  • More modalities standard
  • Upgraded customer service
  • More support for you

In addition, we have added in the policy the following:

  • Premises liability – Also known as slip and fall coverage
  • Products liability – Provides coverage for products that are FDA approved, which are sold to your patients
  • Cyber liability – Aimed at providing protection in case of data breach in your office
  • Injection therapy coverage – This is included without additional cost

Apart from the above-mentioned added benefits, you will also receive defense cost outside the limits of your liability. If the cost, for instance, US $50,000 to defend you for malpractice claim, you still have your full limit of liability intact for settlement.

And, we should not forget to mention that we now have a true consent to settle built-in to our policy standard. This gives you more power, as the policyholder, to choose whether a claim is settled or we continue to fight on your behalf.

And here’s more…

Facial acupuncture coverage is now included with no additional costs (many of AAC acupuncturists are doing facial acupuncture, so we make it sure they are insured)

For injectable substances under your policy, you must have proper and state approved training and certification in order to do injection therapy. Remember, injection therapy cannot be utilized to treat a specific condition and you must follow clean needle techniques.

We also cover pregnancy and fertility (note that your care should be in coordination with the patient’s OB/GYN medical doctor. In addition to that, turning a breech baby including labor, is also covered in the policy

An additional profession under your current acupuncture malpractice insurance policy is also covered. For instance, if you are doing massage therapy apart from acupuncture, you can get that covered under your current policy for only $24.

The premier program

This features an even greater layer of protection. With premier program, general liability increased from your standard premises liability, your products liability, and cyber liability to $20,000 from $10,000 (doubled).

All of the covered proceeding will be increased from a $30,000 sub-limit to a 50,000 limit.

All of the specified items above under the premier program are added to the policy with only $125 additional cost per year.

Have more questions about our acupuncture malpractice coverage? Contact us today to learn more valuable information straight from the source.

Call us at (800) 838-0383

Acupuncturist Malpractice Insurance: Addressing Health Issues in children; Integration of Chinese Medicine to Western Medical Practice

In this post, we are sharing useful insights from a recent Live Event by Dr. Sam Collins of the American Acupuncture Council, with his guest, Dr. David Miller. Their discussion revolved specifically about addressing health issues in children of all ages and the things that acupuncturists can do in order gain more traction in the western medical practice.

Here’s the gist of that discussion:

Why communication is so important. Not all patients who come to your clinic are willing to undergo treatment if they are not familiar (if not fully aware) of the process and their benefits. However, with good communication skills, a practitioner can build reputation and patients begin to trust. It is imperative to send your message across to your patient and right communication is key – to develop a more personal relation with the patient, which makes them more open to new treatment even if the method veers away from conventions .

Why you should be familiar with state laws. Every state has its rules and regulations that are unique to them, which is why it is important that medical practitioners operating in a particular state should be familiar with laws in that area. This holds also true when it comes to acupuncture and the Chinese medicine in general. There are states that allow the integration of Chinese medicine into the western medical practice, but there are also states that impose steep regulations concerning this treatment approach. When you know the local laws, rules and regulations, the chances of your practice being hampered by possible conflict with the law become minimal.

Why go for an integrated, holistic approach in treating children. When making an assessment on children’s health (and eventually addressing the possible health issue), the approach should be holistic. They may complain about back pain, but you should also check the possible underlying issues. For instance, there might also a problem with digestive functions, respiratory issues (e.g. asthma), sleep issue, among others. Such approach is quite common in Chinese medicine, and as an acupuncturist, giving importance to this holistic approach yield positive result.

Why educating doctors about the Chinese medicine is helpful. The discussion also gave highlight on how important it is to educate doctors if you want to integrate acupuncture to western medicine. It put emphasis on the fact that some doctors has little to no knowledge about acupuncture; educating them opens a lot of opportunities, including the expansion of Chinese medicine to the western practice. And the plan of action to carry out process? You need to consider a number of things, including: sending a letter, giving them specific types of cases and their results, asking for a letter of consent (should their patients come to your clinic to seek alternative treatment).

Why establishing presence in the community is important for your practice. Again, the reason why there are still a lot of practitioners who are having a second thought to incorporate Chinese medicine to the western practice is simply the lack of awareness on its benefits. This is why an acupuncture practitioner should reach out to the community. This can help build trust and recognition as you will have an opportunity to introduce this approach to them – with proof of its effectiveness. You can do that using different techniques such as joining in state associations, volunteering, giving lectures – campaigning through grass roots education.

Here’s the link to the live event video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMF2PXNuXSY

And for your need of chiropractic malpractice insurance, contact ChiroSecure today at: (866) 802-4476

Core Components of Health for Children of All Ages; Integration of Chinese Medicine to Western Medical Practice


In this post, we are sharing the discussion from the recent American Acupuncture Council Live Event by Dr. Sam Collins with his guest, Dr. David Miller. They discussed the core components of health for children of all ages. More specifically, they talked about the key role of holistic approach in addressing health issues in children.

This live event also provides useful insights for acupuncture practitioners – on how they can incorporate Chinese medicine to western medical practice.

Here’s the gist of that discussion:

The importance of communication. Not all patients who come to clinics are willing to undergo treatment most especially if they are not familiar (if not fully aware) of the process and their benefits. However, with good communication skills, a practitioner can build reputation and patients begin to trust. Right communication is key to develop a more personal relation with the patient, which makes them more open to new treatment methods.

On why there is a need to be familiar with state laws. Every state has its rules and regulations that are unique to them and this is true when it comes to acupuncture and the Chinese medicine in general. There are states that allow the integration of Chinese medicine into the western medical practice but there are also states that impose steep processes and regulations concerning this treatment approach. Knowing the local laws, rules and regulations in your state is important so that the chances of your practice being hampered because of the conflict with the law become minimal.

The benefits of integrated and holistic approach in treating children. When making an assessment on children’s health, the approach should be holistic. They may complain about back pain, but you should also check the possible underlying issues. For instance, there might also a problem with digestive functions, respiratory issues (e.g. asthma), sleep issue, among others.

The importance of educating doctors about the Chinese medicine. The discussion also gave highlight on how important it is to educate doctors if you want to integrate acupuncture to western medicine. It put emphasis on the fact that some doctors has little to no knowledge about acupuncture and that educating them will open a lot of opportunities, including the expansion of Chinese medicine to the western practice. And the plan of action to carry out process? You need to consider a number of things, including: sending a letter, giving them specific types of cases, letter of consent.

Building reputation by establishing presence in the community. Again, the reason why there are still a lot of practitioners who are not willing to incorporate Chinese medicine to the western practice is simply the lack of awareness on its benefits. This is why an acupuncture practitioner should reach out to the community and you can do that by using different techniques such as joining in state associations, volunteering, giving lectures, campaigning through grass roots education.

Here’s the link to the live event video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMF2PXNuXSY

Want to learn more about acupuncture professional liability insurance? Contact American Acupuncture Council (AAC) today at: (800) 838-0383

Tips on hiring admin & associate superstars for your acupuncture clinic

Getting the right staff is important to any acupuncture clinic (or to any company for that matter) as they can contribute a lot for the attainment of business goals. Hire employees that are competent and can work with you in order to achieve business success, those staff are worth-keeping; they can be considered as pillars that make the foundation of your business even stronger. Be careful in your hiring process so that you find people who are the right fit for the job.

Your staff’s (admin, associates) important roles in your practice include:

  • Serves as frontliner; they are the first contact for patients
  • Help instill confidence in patients about your acupuncture business
  • They can be knowledgeable as practitioners, and can offer help beyond their job description

The question now becomes: How do you hire a ‘superstar’ staff? American Acupuncture Council, through the video hangout of Dr. Sam Collins and Dr. Lorne Brown, provides some tips on how to hire the right staff for your clinic. Some of these are the following:

Hiring for culture fit

Dr. Lorne Brown emphasized in the discussion regarding hiring for culture fit. What does it mean? It means you have to look for candidates whose “values, beliefs, outlook and behavior fit in with your organizational culture. Employees who are a good cultural fit will work well within the environment of the company.”

 Training staff

As your staff plays an important role for your acupuncture practice, it is imperative that you train them well to realize their optimum potential. In case you are anxious about investing on them (some would argue: why invest on them when you are not sure if they stay in your clinic for a period that you get your ROI), Dr. Brown said:

“So what I have done that’s not so much a non compete agreement. What I’ve done is as follows: I pay for my associates, a lot of those things. they become employee loans that are forgivable. And you can choose the date, four years, three years. The way I do it is, “I’m gonna pay for this for you, and it’s gonna be a loan. And if you’re in my clinic four years from today, the loan is 100% forgivable. I’m doing this because I don’t wanna pay for this and you leave in one year. I’d be resentful. And if you choose to leave in one year, I won’t be resentful because you’re gonna have to pay every penny back.” And so this is what I’ve done with my staff.”

Factors that lead to staff’s better performance and personal satisfaction

  • Autonomy is when they feel they are in control
  • Mastery is when they feel like using their full potential and achieve personal and corporate growth
  • Purpose is when they feel like their work matters and makes an impact to patients and the acupuncture industry as a whole

Outlining the hiring process

  • Create a clear job description and expectations
    • What this job is and what it isn’t
    • Include relevant position details, including hours, salary, benefits, and location
  • Post job requisition in places with high visibility
    • Craigslist, LinkedIn, College Job boards/Schools, professional affiliations, personal network
  • Give the candidates a specific action for them to complete to assist in resume sorting
    • Sending a cover letter on why they are an ideal fit for the position

To learn more about hiring highly competent staff for your acupuncture practice, watch this video:

For more tips for your practice, contact the American Acupuncture Council at (800) 838-0383.

The AAC Pledges to Raise $300,00 for Acupuncture Research

The American Acupuncture Council has committed to fundraising $300,000 for the non-profit organization: Consortium for Oriental Medicine Research & Education (COMRE). With the support of the entire acupuncture community, and worldwide leaders alike, AAC will work tirelessly so that we can meet this goal which will directly serve for the betterment and enrichment of the acupuncture profession. COMRE was founded with the purpose and objective of advancing the development and promotion of alternative medicine in the United States. With greater awareness of the benefits and proven efficacy or oriental modalities, COMRE aims to bridge the divide and bring the art of healing to the attention of national healthcare providers and patients alike. To learn more about how you can support this worthy cause, visit us at Community Outreach.

Say Hello to AAC at PCOM

Stop by our booth and say hello to the friendly faces of the American Acupuncture Council at the upcoming Pacific Symposium in San Diego from October 28 to November 3, 2015. We will have some great giveaways and it is always a pleasure to meet new and existing clients and discuss the many exciting benefits of membership with the AAC.

The Pacific Symposium is hosted by Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. The annual Symposium is a great opportunity to network with fellow community healers while learning from innovators in the field. To learn more about the Symposium, or to register please visit: http://pacificsymposium.org/

HIPAA Compliance Audits on the Horizon

Recently the Office of Inspector General (OIG) for the Dept of Health and Human Services (HHS) did a study and found that the Office of Civil Rights (OCR), which has responsibility for HIPAA compliance, is not doing enough to ensure covered entities (CEs), including healthcare providers and insurers, are effectively following HIPAA requirements. They found that most activities were reactive, not proactive. The OCR agreed with report’s recommendations and that they need to do more oversight actvities.

Look for more HIPAA compliance audits and enforcement activities in the coming months as funding for these activities is provided to the OCR.

Have you gotten all your compliance requirements met? This includes: establishing your policies and procedures; implementing them within your practice; ensuring everyone has taken training; ensuring all your business associates have signed a BA Agreement and have security controls in place; and performing a risk assessment; just to name the major requirements.

Make plans in the near term to address all HIPAA compliance requirements.

NOTE: All the 50 State Attorneys General office are also ramping up to do their own HIPAA compliance audits and enforcement, in addition to the OCR’s activities.

See the full report at http://oig.hhs.gov/oei/reports/oei-09-10-00510.pdf