Acupuncturists are licensed professionals that work in the health care industry treating patients using non Western practices.
They use a form of alternative medicine that is traditional in the Oriental part of the world.
To the outsider, Acupuncturists insert a variety of needles into their patients’ skin in order to promote health and treat a variety of illnesses or health concerns.
Acupuncture uses the belief that flow of energy within the human body circulates along intersected energy paths referred to as meridians.
Certain ailments, pain or symptoms are caused by a disrupted or stalled flow of energy.
Acupuncture treatment would require professionals to determine the meridian that is causing the symptoms and encourage the energy flow in that area by inserting the acupuncture needles.
If you have an interest in health and non Western medicine and want to become an Acupuncturist , continue reading the information below.
You will find information on the education requirements to become an Acupuncturist, a general job description, the future outlook for this profession and salary and wage information.
Education Requirements to Become an Acupuncturist
Students who want to become an Acupuncturist must have a deep knowledge of the human body and must complete a formal education program in order to be qualified in this field.
In addition, depending on their state of residency, Acupuncturists must secure license in order to practice this technique.
Department of Education recognizes the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM) who is the national agency responsible for accrediting Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine programs in the United States.
ACAOM currently lists approximately 60 schools at the Master’s level that are accredited or are being considered for accreditation.
Licensing requirements vary by state.
However, there are 43 states and the District of Columbia that require candidates to take the licensing exam administered by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM).
Candidates must take and complete the licensing exam administered by NCCAOM if they reside in the one of the 43 states that requires it.
Depending on the state you reside in, some additional requirements may need to be followed in addition to the licensure exam.
The NCCAOM also provides a list of states that accept their licensing exam.
Certification is valid for four years at which time candidates will need to renew their licensure.
Acupuncturist Job Description
Acupuncturists are licensed professionals who are responsible for treating their patients using a variety of methods.
In addition to needling, Acupuncturists also suggest herbal treatments, acupressure and recommend lifestyle changes.
An Acupuncturist begins a treatment by questioning the patient regarding symptoms and physical complaints.
They may do this by asking verbally or having patients fill out a medical questionnaire.
This information can help an Acupuncturist determine the root of the health problem.
Acupuncturists will pinpoint the meridians that need to be stimulated in order to help the energy flow and relieve medical symptoms.
Self employed Acupuncturists are also responsible for maintaining and promoting their business.
This includes attracting new clients, administrative tasks and managing their business costs.
Acupuncturist Salary and Career Path
American Association of Oriental Medicine states that Acupuncturists typically charge $30 to $70 per treatment or session.
The exact salary for the acupuncturist will depend on the type and length of treatment, geographical location and the cost of treatment.
An Acupuncturist’s exact wages will depend on the rate they charge per session and the quantity of patients and sessions they have.
The majority of Acupuncturists are self employed meaning they are responsible for attracting new patients by paying for advertising.
Other costs that would affect their net income include office space, medical and treatment equipment and malpractice insurance premiums.
All of these out of pocket expenses will affect the take home pay for these professionals.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports employment in the health and medical industry is expected to increase by 22 percent through the year 2018.
This growth is attributed to the aging baby boomer generation which is nearing retirement and that will requirement more medical treatment.