Think seriously about where you want your acupuncture practise to be established. As unbelievable as it sounds, acupuncture in every state is not legal. There are currently about eight states that either have legislation pending or have none at all. Every state has different requirements for licencing. This is not really a problem if you are flexible, but if you have your heart set on living in Delaware (for example), where acupuncturists have no legal protection other than practising with a “supervising” MD, then you may want to reconsider your strategy. If you would like to learn more about this, please check out Synergy Institute Acupuncture & Chiropractic – Naperville acupuncturist.
Come to the College of Accredited Acupuncture. In the United States, there are approximately 50 Accredited Acupuncture Colleges offering Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine (AOM) certification, also known as Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). AOM and TCM include the practise of acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, and Asian bodywork, but their emphasis and course requirements will vary from one university to another. The majority of Acupuncture Colleges have a duration of 3 or 4 years and offer a Master’s Degree in Acupuncture and/or Oriental Medicine.
Get Board Certified for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine by the National Certification Commission (NCCAOM). You can take a test through the NCCAOM to become Board Certified after you graduate from an accredited Acupuncture College. For most states that have legal practise guidelines for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, this test is recognised as the requirement for certification. The exception is the state of California, which has its own certification examination and requirements for practise from the state board. If you are thinking about setting up your acupuncture practise in California, be sure to look up their specific requirements, including the appropriate degrees offered by Acupuncture Schools.
Study the principles of Acupuncture Practice Management, Marketing, and Business Success. You have the opportunity as an acupuncturist to be a business owner, a solo practitioner, and an entrepreneur. In other words, you get to be the boss of your own! However, where many Acupuncturists fail, it is in rejecting business opportunities and concentrating entirely on the principles and techniques of healing. These are essential, but you cannot provide Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine to individuals who need it and want it if you do not have a successful acupuncture practise. For more than 7 years, I have been a full-time acupuncturist and I can tell you with great certainty that it is the coolest profession on earth indeed. Do not take my word for it, however. Become and find out for yourself as an acupuncturist!