Also called ‘Group’ style acupuncture, group treatment is acupuncture done in a group setting — from 2 to 5 individuals receiving treatments at the same time. Patients are fully clothed and seated. A brief problem-focused history is taken with each patient and acupuncture needles are placed on the ear; and depending on the patient’s condition, additional acupuncture points on the body may be used. Acupuncture points on the ear can be used to treat the whole body. Community acupuncture is an easy introduction to acupuncture and Chinese Medicine and a good way to meet the practitioner for the first time. It is provided during consistent hours generally, making it easily accessible to patients. By offering the services at affordable sliding scale rates, patients are able to have frequent treatments, providing you with a more complete treatment plan. Community acupuncture helps in lowering the barriers associated with acupuncture by receiving treatments, with minimal needles and with other community members, as one heals, we all heal.
The words Community Acupuncture when put together, are not just a description of the kind of acupuncture given in a community or group setting, but also describe who is served by the acupuncture: our communities as we define them. However the words Community Acupuncture are not just describing a one-way relationship of the acupuncturists to their communities, but the relationship of the communities to the acupuncture, to the clinic, and to the practitioners, and other staff. The words Community Acupuncture when put together represent the connection and the contract between Acupuncture and Communities.
Acupuncture is often defined by the community of acupuncture practitioners as one part of the major practices of Traditional Chinese Medicine. But it is not just those who practice, or are licensed to practice, or educated to practice acupuncture who get to define what acupuncture is and isn’t. With Community Acupuncture, the definition cannot only come from those delivering care, but those who are served by acupuncture must have also have a role in defining it. To define acupuncture as a technique, or part of a body of knowledge, leaves out its active role in those who are most affected by it: our patients.
We need our patients and community members. We need them in many ways; without them we would have no practices or clinics at all, no income, no referrals, no supporters, no critics, no dynamic force to propel us forward as individual clinics, but also as a growing national, and even world movement of affordable healthcare for our communities.