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Acupuncture in the U.K. Today: A Personal View
When asked to write a short piece on the current state of the U.K. acupuncture profession, my first response was to say it has all been relatively quiet.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
A Poor Choice for Pain Relief
Acetaminophen is the most popular pain reliever in the U.S., accounting for an estimated 27 billion annual doses as of 2009. With 100,000-plus hospital visits a year by users, it's also the most likely to be taken inappropriately.
What Does Success Mean to You?
Recently, I was asked to speak to young, budding businesswomen about running a successful business — and at first I thought, "Me? You want me to speak to others about success?!"
Spieth Thanks His Chiropractor After Historic Masters Win
Jordan Spieth didn't just capture the hearts of golf enthusiasts worldwide with his record-setting, wire-to-wire victory at the 79th Masters Tournament.
We Get Letters & Email
A House Divided? (May 1 issue) provoked significant response from readers. Here are several of the surprisingly similar comments we received.
The Modern Acupuncturist
You studied ancient Chinese medicine, but I'll bet you don't practice it! Contrary to popular belief, our medicine has evolved A LOT over the years. Let's take a brief walk through history and discover the differences between ancient and modern acupuncturists.
The Year to Make Things Happen
It is hard to believe that the Year of the Ram – 2015 is half over. Time seems to be moving especially fast. This is the year for things to happen for the acupuncture profession.
Acupuncture and the Pulse
In 1991, I attended a martial arts workshop hosted coincidentally by Sung Baek, a martial artist and the head of his lineage as a Korean trained acupuncturist. I was enamored by the details Sung could attain from the pulse, as told to me by some of his apprentices.
Rethinking Musculoskeletal Pain – A Public Health Perspective
The American Public Health Association (APHA) is the world's oldest and largest association of its kind, founded more than 140 years ago and boasting over 25,000 members.
The Source-Luo Point Combination
The luo collaterals are part of the acupuncture channel system presented in the Su Wen and the Ling Shu (The Nei Jing). The function and clinical application of the luo mai are primarily presented in chapter 10 of the Ling Shu, however, they are also found in others chapters in the Su Wen and the Ling Shu.
Calculating Billable Units
I recently learned of an office that was audited based on the number of acupuncture sessions performed in one day. Is there a maximum number of sessions that can be performed in one day?
Use Technology to Gain New Patients and Improve Efficiency
From the smartphone in your pocket to your microwave oven, advancements in technology have made almost every aspect of our lives easier.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 2
A talented young woman presented herself with emotional mood swings, which included being nervous, anxious and jittery.
First Do No Harm?
There's no questioning the frightening nature of breast cancer, which strikes one in eight women in the U.S. – eclipsed only by skin cancer in terms of prevalence.
Breath: The Movement of Oxygen and Energy
I remember with surprising clarity the first time a patient started crying during an acupuncture treatment I was giving. This is now quite a long time ago, back in 1999, when I was a student.
Leg-Length Inequality and Pelvic Fixation: A New Approach to the Negative Derifield (Part 2)
As we noted in our previous article, with a positive Derifield (+D), the doctor observes the reactive (shorter) leg in the prone position that becomes longer or "crosses over" in the flexed position.
ACA or ICA: Which Best Represents You?
Last June, I was honored to represent Texas ICA members as their representative assemblyman at the ICA Annual Meeting in Kansas City.
TMF 2015 Scholarships
The Trudy McAlister Foundation (TMF), a nonprofit organization established to support students who are on track to make contributions either to clinical practice and/or to the understanding of the role of Traditional Oriental Medicine, has announced the 2015 scholarship recipients.
Reducing the Autogenic Inhibition Reflex: Making Weak Muscles Strong
The autogenic inhibition (AI) reflex is a sudden relaxation of a muscle in response to excess tension.
How One Little Symbol (#) Gets You More Patients
Are you struggling to get more fans or followers for your acupuncture practice? Or are looking for ways to simply connect with your patients? Or do you just want to know how to keep them engaged (comments, retweeting, liking and sharing)?
Professional Credentialing and Board Certification: An Ethical Faux Pas
Because of the Affordable Care Act, health care systems are coordinating care through accountable care organizations (ACOs) in order to reduce the cost of care and improve quality of care.
The Nectar of Plants: Essential Oils and Chinese Medicine
Essential oils are a very hot topic these days, especially with the likes of the Ebola virus and the resurgence of measles lurking in our awareness, but when I first became interested in Chinese medicine, essential oils weren't on the radar screen for acupuncturists.
Our Biggest Challenges to Compete in Wellness Care
In the first article in this four-article series [May 1 DC], I made the case that chiropractors should either embrace offering lifestyle wellness in their practices or face the possibility of losing their place in the wellness care marketplace.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients, in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2 to 4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2-4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
January, 2007, Vol. 07, Issue 01
By Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB
A new year is here. I hope you had a joyous season and sold lots of gift certificates! In my previous column, I pointed out that professional regulation, the fancy term for licensure, is not really for the good or safety of the public, but for the good of the regulated profession.The public never has demanded regulation of a profession; it's always the profession that asks for it.
The professions want the monopoly and the other favors granted by the state, so they do what they must to get the legislators to grant them. Legislators will grant almost anything for enough campaign contributions or perceived support. This is why the medical lobbies are more successful in legislative efforts than the alternative disciplines. It's all about money in politics. Notice the DCs have become quite influential lately? They have quite a bit of money now, too. Interestingly, they now are often lobbying against good licensing laws for massage therapists or lobbying for bad ones. How quickly they forgot their own struggle to gain licensure and now want to pull the ladder up behind themselves or gain control over another profession. The AMA model and attitude is contagious, I guess.
Everyone says regulation is for the safety of the public, especially the public health bureaucrats who administer the laws. Some actually believe it. They don't think and discern enough to see through the propaganda. There always is "doublespeak" in government, like the "anti-cloning bill" in Missouri that legalized cloning, the Medical Privacy Act that made your records available to just about anyone but you and your family, and my favorite, the Paperwork Reduction Act that created more forms than ever. The public wouldn't stand for this stuff if it were accurately named and simply written. Laws are written carefully and deliberately. The authors know exactly what they are creating and why, except in our profession.
Can some good come to the public from licensing? Of course, and it does. Everything is a trade-off in this world of duality. The public receives a certain level of guaranteed mediocrity, a lowest-common-denominator standard, which feels like safety to them. The government gains revenue and more control, and the profession gets its monopoly (if the law is correctly written). It's important to understand this, as it's the game being played. For the most part, our profession is trying to play the game with a very naïve understanding of it, and as a result, we are losing instead of winning. This is obvious by the hodge-podge of laws we have passed, some of which place more restrictions on what we can do than are placed on unlicensed providers. Our current level of legislative skill is allowing the other players to use the system against us. We can do better, and we must. Next time, I will discuss one of the most important protections licensing provides - the disciplinary process, which was created to protect providers from the public.
When surveyed, 80 percent of Americans were dissatisfied with the cost of health care generally. Fifty-four percent are dissatisfied with the quality of health care in general. However, when asked about their own care, 57 percent said they are satisfied with the cost and 89 percent said they were satisfied with the quality. What an incredible disconnect. This is the "I'm OK but you're not OK" perception of life. Sadly, people will give up being okay just because they think others are not. Then, neither is OK and things get progressively worse. This shows how effective the government-media cartel has been in disparaging the best health care system on the planet, bungled as it is, as it attempts to make people believe there is such a crisis that the government must step in and provide universal health care. People have become so mind-numbed they can't tell the reality of their experience from the unreality (lies) of the media propaganda. The government wants complete control over your health care because that gives it complete control over you, in particular, and the complete control over population in general.
The state (the government) should exist to benefit its citizens. That never lasts long, as the power-hungry politicians, who fear nothing more than intelligent, free, self-reliant citizens, incrementally corrupt the system until the citizens exist to benefit the government. The people are conned into voting to tax themselves more and to give up their freedoms and rights, in return for the false sense of security they receive from an ever increasing and intrusive government.
The November 2006 election was a classic case of people's minds being manipulated into believing something quite different than the actual reality. By the way, I am not a Republican. I am an Independent. That being said, the irrational behavior brought about a good result in the "throw the bums out" effect. Now, if we can just throw the bums out every election until we get to the point that no one ever serves more than one term, we might have a chance at saving our Republic form of government. (No, it's not a democracy!)
Nothing sums up the current political situation better than two quotes from one of my heroes of the alternative health movement, Bob Livingston, who writes:
I bring up this perceptual disconnect because there soon will be a movement to resurrect the Clinton health care program. More on that to come in my next column. For now, just know that had the program passed as written, all independent massage therapists who address specific conditions (pain, injuries, headaches, etc.) would have been put out of business, or worse.
When treating tennis or golfer's elbow, remember that while the injury occurs just distal to the lateral or medial epicondyle of the elbow respectfully, the muscles course all the way to the hand and fingers. Be sure to examine the entire length of the muscle with massage and stretching and you will get faster and better results than just treating the injury site.
Enjoy this year's winter wonderland, wherever you are. Being a Midwesterner, during these three months I hope for global warming (just kidding). I'll be back again in March. Bring your kites.
Survey of the Week: Flu Shots Contain Mercury
A survey of more than 9,000 Americans found that an overwhelming majority of people had no idea their flu shots contain mercury. "More than 75 percent of Americans feel a mercury-containing flu shot should not be given to a pregnant woman or a child," said Lisa Handley, a founding parent of putchildrenfirst.org, the group that organized the survey. Handley's own son, Jamison, had an adverse reaction to a flu shot containing mercury in 2003. "I know firsthand how life-changing a flu shot with mercury can be, since our son began his regression into autism after his flu shot." In 1999, government agencies called for the removal of Thiomersal, the mercury-based preservative in most vaccines. Then, in 2001, the American Academy of Pediatrics stated, "Mercury in all of its forms is toxic to the fetus and children." Despite these actions, 90 percent of this season's flu vaccines still contain Thiomersal. Learn more at www.organicconsumers.org/2006/article_3400.cfm.
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