Community acupuncture an affordable holistic health treatment
by Emily Konstan
What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a traditional form of medicine that began in China more than 2,000 years ago. It is based on the flow of energy through pathways in the body. If these pathways become blocked, energy can get stuck. This can manifest as pain, swelling, weakness, or a number of different medical conditions. Acupuncture seeks to restore the smooth flow of energy through these pathways, creating balance and harmony in the body.
What Can Acupuncture Treat?
Since 1979, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recognized acupuncture as an appropriate treatment for a variety of conditions, including: digestive and urinary problems, emotional disorders, pain syndromes, respiratory difficulties, women’s health, and many other conditions.
Some of the most common complaints seen in acupuncture clinics are: back and neck pain, stress, insomnia, headaches, and fertility issues.
Why Choose Community Acupuncture?
Community acupuncture is done in a group setting. This allows community practices to keep treatment costs low, using a sliding scale of $15-$45 or a flat rate of less than $30.
Because of the group setting, there is more appointment availability and many people choose to come in with friends or family members. Patients remain fully clothed and are treated in reclining chairs, making the feel of the space less clinical and more like someone’s living room or community center. This group setting is closer to the way acupuncture is practiced traditionally in China. People also seem to relax more deeply and experience better results from the treatment when they are treated in a room with other people.
Since a community acupuncturist performs many treatments each week and sees a wide variety of patients, you get the benefit of a practitioner with experience treating a broad range of conditions. Community acupuncture also means a practitioner and a business model that are committed to the growth and health of the community. Community acupuncturists actively seek out ways to be part of the community and support local programs through activities such as being a drop-off point for CSAs, displaying the work of local artists, and volunteering at veterans acupuncture programs.
The current market rates for private acupuncture range from $50-$90, and sometimes higher. Although many people could afford market rates for acupuncture every once in a while, if you have an ongoing health condition or one that is that is moderate or severe, you will need multiple acupuncture treatments. Most people cannot afford to pay private rates for an extended period. Even in the rare case that insurance covers a portion of your acupuncture treatment, most companies won’t pay for a sufficient course of treatment.
Everyone benefits when more people have access to affordable acupuncture. Neighborhoods become physically healthier and more able to manage stress. Practitioners and patients work together to make the acupuncture experience better for the community.
How Do I Find a Community Acupuncture Practice?
There are more than 200 community acupuncture practices in the United States and internationally. Find a comprehensive list at: http://www.communityacupuncturenetwork.org/clinics
Emily Konstan is a Licensed Acupuncturist and the owner of River Valley Acupuncture, a community acupuncture practice in Worcester, MA.
After graduating with a Master’s Degree in Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine from the New England School of Acupuncture in 2006, Emily started a private acupuncture practice in Worcester County. Frustrated that the high cost of private acupuncture treatments prevented many people from being able to afford her services, she joined the Community Acupuncture Network and established a community practice in 2009. She now happily performs thousands of acupuncture treatments a year for average-income patients.
Emily has extensive experience in treating patients for pain management, including back pain, fibromyalgia, and migraines; women's health; and emotional disorders such as anxiety, depression, stress, and insomnia.
Community Acupuncture in Worcester MA