[Updated January 18, 2024]
Welcome to CSOMA’s District Rep Program!
If you want to strengthen acupuncture access and advocacy in California, this is where the action is!
We are excited to build a community of acupuncturists in the major California districts where legislation decisions are made.
Here’s all you need to do:
- Click on your district on CSOMA’s District Map
- Complete the form
We’ll be in touch with next steps. This is just the beginning – stay tuned for more updates as we pilot our first program.
“California Acupuncture Day” celebration conference held grandly
The American Association of Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture and Evan Low, a state representative representing Silicon Valley, held a celebration meeting at Cupertino Community Hall from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, October 22 to celebrate the passage of AR48 Resolution by the California State Government. The sponsor of the California Acupuncture Day Resolution is Congressman Rodalan, and the main sponsor is the American Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine. The case confirms July 12 as California Acupuncture Day, which was signed by California Governor Jerry Brown before 1975 to legalize California acupuncture.
In the afternoon of the same day, California Finance Minister Fiona Ma, State Representative Evan Low, Alex Lee, Cupertino Deputy Mayor Sheila Mohan, City Councillor Liang Chao, Palo Alto Mayor Lydia Kou, Saratooga Deputy Mayor Yan Zhao and others attended the conference to congratulate.
Leaders and representatives of the American Chinese Culture and Medical University, the California Five Departments of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Medical University, the International University of Medicine, the University of California Silicon Valley, the American Chinese Medical Association, the American Korean Acupuncture Association AKAMAC, CalATMA, CAOMA, CAUA, CSOMA and other co-organizers came from all parts of
The celebration was co-chaired by Li Ying, vice president of the American Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine, and James Wang, an assistant to Congressman Luo. Representative Rodalen, Representative Li Tianming and Finance Minister Ma Shiyun delivered enthusiastic greetings respectively. They highly praised the achievements of Mr. Brown, the former governor, and spoke highly of the milestone significance of the establishment of “California Acupuncture Day”, which will have a positive and far-reaching impact on the development of acupuncture in California. At the same time, they strongly commended the important contributions made by the California acupuncture industry to promoting public health care. Huang Xiansheng, Honorary President of the American Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine, delivered a speech on behalf of the chairman and co-organizers. He thanked Senator Luo for proposing the establishment of “California Acupuncture Day” to vigorously promote acupuncture; thanked the dignitaries for taking time out of their busy schedules to congratulate them; thanked the co
Subsequently, Congressman Luo presented the resolution to the leader of the California acupuncture community, which was received by the representative of President Huang Xiansheng. Senator Li will give the commendation to the leaders of the co-organizers. Senator Luo, Senator Li and Finance Minister Ma took a group photo with the dignitaries and leaders of the co-organizers who were at the meeting. Several mayors, deputy mayors and councillors also delivered congratulations and congratulatory certificates.
Before the celebration, a lecture on traditional Chinese medicine health was held, and professors from California’s five departments of traditional Chinese medicine and the University of California Silicon Valley gave speeches. After the award ceremony, large-scale acupuncture and medical treatment and Taiji performances were also held on the spot.
Nearly 300 dignitaries, elected officials, leaders and representatives of traditional Chinese medicine organizations, teachers and students of traditional Chinese medicine schools, and the community attended the celebration meeting on that day. The event was unprecedented and spread as a good story for a while, setting off another round of “acupuncture fever” in California.
Contributed by the Secretariat of the American Society of Traditional Chinese Medicine
October 22, 2023 (October 22)
On May 9, Reps. Chu, Fitzpatrick Introduce Acupuncture for Our Seniors Act of 2023.
This bill would increase Medicare beneficiaries’ access to acupuncturists, provide more non-pharmacological options for pain relief, and promote the profession’s growth.
“Our seniors deserve affordable access to non-pharmacological pain relief provided by acupuncturists and billed through Medicare,” said Sarah Hart, L.Ac., California State Oriental Medicine Association (CSOMA) President. “CSOMA fully supports expanding access to acupuncture within the healthcare delivery system and thanks Reps. Judy Chu and Brian Fitzpatrick for introducing the Acupuncture for Our Seniors Act.”
CMS already recognizes the value of acupuncture and began covering services in January 2020. Unfortunately, because acupuncturists do not have Medicare-provider status, they cannot provide these covered services to beneficiaries without supervision. The status quo disrupts the acupuncture service-delivery model, as they cannot independently provide services to Medicare beneficiaries, despite their ability to do so for non-Medicare beneficiaries. The resulting access barrier hurts Senior Citizens and exacerbates healthcare inefficiencies. (Excerpt from the ASA/NCCAOM press release.)
Read the full press release from Congresswoman Judy Chu here.
Read the ASA/NCCAOM press release here.
CSOMA legislation news on AB 765
To our members who are awaiting a response regarding AB 765 and next steps. CSOMA is working diligently with allied health care professionals, and acupuncture state associations in California for clarification and updates on the AB 765 bill as written.
Currently the bill has been opposed as written by numerous professional associations, as there is uncertainty if the bill as written would strip the Dr. title from other professionals such as Doctor of Acupuncture, Doctor of Dentistry, Doctor of Chiropractic etc.
Here is what we know:
1. Opposition for AB 765 as written letter was sent on behalf of CSOMA members to Business and Professions Committee. (see below)
2. AB 765_fact sheet from Representative Wood’s office
3. Discussion amongst CA Stakeholders on call to action campaign, next steps ongoing
4. News from Legislator Wood’s office that “The bill makes no changes to other practice acts and other licensed practitioners’ ability to use the title Dr as long as it is done consistent with existing requirements. Meaning if I am an optometrist I can use the title Dr so long as it is clear I am an O.D., i.e. Dr. Snow, OD. The committee consultant is proposing language that makes it perfectly clear that nothing in section (a) changes existing law for other practitioners.” (From email of Liz Snow, Chief of Staff)
5. April 11th is a hearing for this bill with public comment.
6. Members: Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn for more, and to find out how you can support our grass roots efforts. Become a member to help CSOMA support you on these major issues affecting the profession in CA.
The following opposition statement was submitted via Business and Professions Committee online portal on March 27, 2023:
Dear Business and Professions Committee,
CSOMA Opposes AB765.
CSOMA is a professional association representing acupuncturists including acupuncturists with doctorate degrees from accredited doctorate programs. CSOMA supports protecting the public from false advertising and misrepresentation of medical professional’s qualifications. However, AB765 as written does not make it clear that acupuncturists can continue to use the title “Dr.” followed by the type of acupuncture doctorate degree. Acupuncturists with doctoral degrees are authorized to use the title “Dr.” alongside their license or degree title in the following statutes:
Article 2. Certification Requirements (Article 2 added by Stats. 1980 ch. 1313, § 11.5)
§ 4936. Use of “Doctor” or “Dr.”
(a) It is unprofessional conduct for an acupuncturist to use the title “Doctor” or the abbreviation “Dr.” in connection with the practice of acupuncture unless he or she possesses a license that authorizes the use or possesses an earned doctorate degree from an accredited, approved, or authorized educational institution as set forth under Chapter 8 (commencing with Section 94800) of Part 59 of Division 10 of Title 3 of the Education Code, which is in acupuncture, oriental medicine, a biological science, or is otherwise related to the authorized practice of an acupuncturist as set forth in Sections 4927 and 4937.
(b) The use of the title “Doctor” or the abbreviation “Dr.” by an acupuncturist as authorized in subdivision (a) without further indicating the type of license or degree which authorizes that use shall constitute unprofessional conduct.
(Added by Stats. 2012, Ch. 326, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2013.)
Please amend AB765 to clarify that other professions, as authorized in state statutes, may continue to use the title “Dr.” followed by their license or degree type.
Jennifer Knapp is TCMzone’s Director of Sales and Marketing, and she has a wealth of information to share – including some tips for new practitioners.
Tell us about yourself and your role at TCMzone.
My background is in business, with a B.S.B.A and emphasis in International Marketing. I began working for Dr. Dan Wen, President of TCMzone over 18 years ago and have never looked back. I do focus much of my time and energy on sales and marketing, including our continuing education programs, but I also handle much of the logistics and day to day operations at TCMzone.
What do practitioners love most about TCMZone?
Well, first, I’d like to say what TCMzone loves most about our practitioner customers.
Our loyal following has shown us so much support over the years, some of our customers have been with us since the beginning. Our customers provide us with the drive to continue to go the extra mile, to grow and provide the best in Chinese medicine and education to this field.
We have an exceptional team, including our in-house acupuncturist, Alex Qiu who is available to discuss our herbs in detail and answer any questions about our herbs. We also have a committed customer service staff speaking both English and Mandarin, always ready to help.
It is so important to advance this medicine in the U.S. and globally and show just what Chinese Medicine brings to the table. It’s not just about us succeeding as a business, we are a part of a bigger picture of advancing Chinese Medicine as a whole field. I hope that practitioners feel that when they use our herbs, take part in our educational trainings and work with TCMzone as their trusted herbal supplier.
Practitioners have a lot of herbal products to choose from. What makes TCMZone’s stand out?
I mentioned our core is revolutionary herbal products. Well, what does that mean exactly?
To us, being a revolutionary or pioneer in this field of Chinese Medicine has always been what TCMzone is about. We started our company with the first ever Japanese Kampo line of granule formulas in what has become our signature individual dose packet form. This line personifies what we continue to always strive for:
- Highest quality – not only in herbal ingredients, but also testing, manufacturing, packaging and service;
- Innovation – from our dosage forms including liquid softgels, individual packet granules to our formulas including exclusive custom formulas made exclusively for TCMzone right alongside our classics; and
- Education – we believe knowledge is key when working with and recommending herbs, which is why each of our staff is well trained in our products and services, and for over a decade we’ve been offering continuing education to licensed healthcare practitioners as an NCCAOM, CA & FL state CEU provider.
What would you say are your best sellers?
We offer such a wide variety of herbal products with the goal of meeting every practitioner’s needs, that I think it would be best to go through some of our more popular products based upon brand.
TCMzone is our largest line of classic formulas and single herb granules selling many of the more commonly used formulas in the U.S., including T24-Jia Wei Xiao Yao San, T41-Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang, T65-Gui Pi Tang and single herb granules such as, Huang Qi, Fu Ling, Ban Xia (in our granule packets and 100g).
In our original Honso brand of Japanese granule packets our top sellers are H09-Xiao Chai Hu Tang, H48-Shi Quan Da Bu Tang and our incredibly popular Mulberry Matcha tea for maintaining healthy blood sugar levels.
Our TCM Softgel line sells very well, not only for the available formulas, but also for the dosage form. In the U.S. it can be challenging to get good patient compliance with herbs, however with the liquid softgels there is no herbal odor or taste and the small, smooth gel caps are easy for patients to swallow. The top formulas in this line are K002-Yin Qiao, K006-Shuang Huang Lian and our new K009-Reduning formula for respiratory support.
Finally, our TCMCeuticals line has become a top selling brand due to the custom formulations available, including our Fertility Phase 1,2,3 protocol which has shown to be our top selling products, the Esophageal Balance for acid reflux and MindKalm for stress are also at the top of this line.
Are there any new products practitioners should know about?
I’m so glad you asked this. We are seeing so many new and exciting things happening in 2022.
We recently brought on our custom advanced immune support formula, our K007-Yu Ping Feng San Plus which has actually become our top selling herbal formula over the last two years. It is based on classic Yu Ping Feng San but with the added herbs Jin Yin Hua (Lonicera flower), Pei Lan (Eupatorium), Guan Zhong (Dryopteris Root) and Chen Pi (Tangerine Peel) to assist in clearing toxins and expel heat and dampness. It has played a big role in assisting with supporting immune function (Wei Qi and Zheng Qi).
Our new softgel formula K009, Reduning has also been an integral formula combination to support respiratory health and clear toxins, with Qing Hao (Artemisia) being the chief herb to help with inflammation.
We are adding to our TCMzone line, bringing on 80 new formulas and single herbs in the first half of this year, which will bring this line to over 150 formulas and over 300 single herbs.
Finally, the launch of our new automated loose granule dispensary system will make it easier than ever to have custom formulas made for our practitioners in a clean, sealed, exact method for dosing. We’re very excited to have this new service to provide for practitioners.
What advice would you give new practitioners who are starting to build their herbal pharmacy?
What I have learned from talking with new and experienced practitioners over the years is the importance of committing to your practice. Many new graduates understandably find it overwhelming to start up their practice and offer a full herbal pharmacy in addition to their acupuncture treatments.
The three main hurdles that have been brought to my attention are cost, space and time. So, at TCMzone we have made it our goal to meet these challenges with our customers and help to overcome them.
Firstly, we offer starter kits for new practitioners to get them started in setting up their pharmacy and thereafter we have our TCMzone Membership Program. This program allows you to build up your discount with every herb order you place with us. As you accrue more orders, you advance to a different level of membership (Bronze, Silver, Gold). You then get to keep that discount on every order you place directly with us. It’s our way of not only helping you start your TCMzone pharmacy but being able to maintain your herbal pharmacy.
Now, if space is a factor for you, we also offer our brand new customized, automated dispensary system. You send us your prescription of raw herbs, # of day and patient details and we mix, seal, package and ship the custom granule formula direct to your patient arriving within 1-2 business days. We also offer drop-ship services for all of our patent formulas.
Are there other resources you provide that students or practitioners should know about?
In addition to our professional herbs, starter kits and member benefits, we offer a full continuing education program that has been going strong for over 10 years. This has grown into a large portion of our business here at TCMzone. We’ve grown this program so successfully that to date, we’ve reached over 5,000 licensed healthcare practitioners all around the world and brought hundreds of renowned instructors to teach our courses.
We offer monthly live PDA/CEU webinars, distance learning courses, our new Advanced Wisdom Series and complimentary recordings.
At TCMzone, we realize how important it is to work with students and educational institutions to educate on Chinese herbal medicine. So, we offer students additional discounts off our wholesale prices and we also have our line of herbs available at some of the top institutions in the U.S., including Pacific College of Health Sciences, Midwest College, Phoenix Institute of Herbal Medicine and Acupuncture, Southern California University of Health Sciences, New England School Of Acupuncture at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences and more.
We’ve provided both practitioner and student clinical training trips to China over the course of the last 10 years through our established relationship with Shanghai University of TCM and affiliated hospital. We plan on offering these trips again soon.
Any news, events or specials you’d like to mention coming up in 2022?
As I mentioned above, we are bringing on 80 new single herbs and formulas in April 2022, so watch for these to come.
Our January-June 2022 webinar package is already underway, with new webinars being offered every month, https://tcmzone.com/education/.
Our first Advanced Webinar Series begins April 23rd on Fundamental Kidney Theory with Professor Xiangru Xiao. We’re also bringing back renowned Professor Huang Huang for a second Wisdom Series on Jing Fang Classics beginning June 11, https://tcmzone.com/wisdom-series/.
Our new TCMzone Membership Program is already underway. Readers can contact us directly to find out more about this program and how they can begin benefiting from the program and take discounts off every order they place directly with TCMzone.
Our new customized granule dispensary system is now here and practitioners can begin utilizing this service for all of their custom formula needs.
Our new website launched end of March 2022, with all new services (including our packet dispensary and new custom, loose granule dispensary pages), more resources and information and a whole new look, making it a much more easy site to navigate and an overall more user-friendly experience.
Anything else you’d like to add?
I would just like to take the opportunity to thank you for inviting me to be a part of this featured member interview. It’s been a pleasure getting the chance to talk about our company and products and services that I’m so very proud of. I hope that your readers get some insight into TCMzone and our products and services that maybe they didn’t previously have and understand who we are as a leading herbal products supplier.
I enjoy the continued learning experiences that TCMzone has provided me and working with licensed healthcare practitioners whose goal is to provide their patients with the best treatment protocols in a natural, progressive and integrative way has made me extremely proud to be a part of such a revolutionary, quality-driven, education-focused company.
Your readers can find out more about TCMzone and what we have to offer by visiting our website, https://tcmzone.com/. They can also reach me directly at email@example.com or any of our helpful staff at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you, Jennifer! And thanks to TCMzone for their continued membership with CSOMA.