Acupuncture increasingly embraced in US by patients, doctors

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 16 (Xinhua) -- Acupuncture, an ancient traditional Chinese medical technique, is increasingly embraced by patients and doctors in the United States, attendants at a conference in San Francisco said Sunday.


A patient is treated with traditional acupuncture therapy at Guangxi international Zhuang medicine hospital in Nanning, capital of south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Sept. 7, 2018. (File photo: Xinhua)

The First National Conference of Chinese Medicine and US Chinese Medicine Development Strategy Forum gathers more than 300 Chinese medicine practitioners.

Huang Xiansheng, president of the American Association of Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture (AACMA), one of the event organizers, said he saw the potential of introducing acupuncture to more patients and promoting traditional Chinese medicine to the US mainstream, though traditional Chinese medicine faces both challenges and opportunities in the United States.

In particular, Huang said acupuncture is getting to be recognized as an alternative treatment to certain conditions.

Currently there are about 45,000 licensed acupuncturists in the United States.

"Traditional Chinese medicine is a cultural treasure of the Chinese civilization, and it provides 'distinguished footnotes' to the world's medical diversity," said Xiao Xiayong, Chinese cultural counselor in San Francisco, at the conference.

He told the conference that the Chinese government attaches great importance to developing and promoting traditional Chinese medicine.

The conference on Sunday, co-hosted by seven Chinese medicine organizations in California, New York, Florida, Washington D.C. and Massachusetts, was aimed to integrate traditional Chinese medicine into the US mainstream medicine and provide a platform for exchanges.

California Assembly Members David Chiu, Phil Ting and Evan Low, both of Chinese descent, attended the conference to show their support.

Chiu said he was born in the family of a traditional Chinese medicine practitioner and that he supported a California legislature to include acupuncture in insurance coverage. Low said it is important to boost the acupuncture community and have acupuncture included in insurance coverage.

Cover image: VCG