Education and Training
ICMART Lexicon Medical Acupuncture
ICMART General Recommendations on Education for Medical Acupuncture
The education and training in medical acupuncture offered by different schools and associations around the world varies considerably in terms of quality assurance, accreditation and certification. The aim of this document is to provide general recommendations on education for medical acupuncture.
Medical acupuncture is a medical discipline having a central core of knowledge embracing the integration of acupuncture from various traditions into contemporary medical practice.
This document describes the general requirements considered adequate for the training of medical doctors for the practice of acupuncture at an appropriate level, in any country.
The specific parts of this training should be defined by each National board, the representative organization that monitors the training of medical doctors, according to the rules of each country. Its task should include setting national standards and supervising the following:
- Duration of training
- Contents of training
- Quality control
- Control of capacity of training according to demand
- Procedures for entrance of training
- Assessment or other means of qualification
ICMART has the purpose to promote the highest standards of care, by ensuring that the training of medical acupuncture is raised to an adequate level.
This aim is achieved by the following means:
- Recommendations for setting and maintaining standards of training
- Recommendations for setting standards and recognition of training institutions.
REGISTER OF MEDICAL DOCTORS TRAINED IN ACUPUNCTURE
The national medical organisation or national medical acupuncture organisation (ICMART member association) is responsible for keeping a register at national level of doctors trained in, and practising medical acupuncture with data about their specialty, competences and other relevant matters.
GENERAL ASPECTS OF TRAINING
The training must prepare the student to:
- Understand the conceptual basis of acupuncture
- Understand the scientific basis for acupuncture.
- Acquisition of the necessary critical appraisal skills to evaluate the literature and to apply the current best evidence to clinical practice.
- The ability to locate and define the use of acupuncture points
- An understanding of, and ability to competently use the various modalities of acupuncture treatment.
- Ability to take a medical history and perform a physical examination appropriate to the individual case, in order to integrate acupuncture into contemporary medical management.
- Have the knowledge of the indications, contraindications and possible adverse effects to provide a safe and ethical application of medical acupuncture.
CRITERIA FOR ADMISSION
Trainees should be legally qualified medical doctors, dentists and veterinarians.
DURATION OF TRAINING
The duration of training on medical acupuncture should be sufficient for unsupervised practice after completion of training.
To ensure the quality of teaching, training programmes must include the practise of acupuncture techniques, under supervision of teachers.
Training outcomes are prioritised over specific duration of programmes.
The training of each student must be assessed by written, oral and practical methods either during or at the end of the programme.
RECOGNITION of the TRAINING INSTITUTIONS
The national medical acupuncture organisation(s) should recommend training institutions and teachers at national level in accordance with national rules, and in consideration of ICMART guidance.
QUALITY ASSURANCE of the TRAINING INSTITUTION
The training institution should have an internal system of quality assurance. Ideally, some form of external validation by an independent body should be sought.
TEACHING INFRASTRUCTURE of the INSTITUTION
The trainee should have space and opportunities for practical and theoretical study. Access to adequate professional literature should be provided as well as space and equipment for practical training.
Australian Medical Acupuncture College, Education Standards, 2008
Charter on Training of Medical Specialists in the European Community, Charter adopted by the Management Council of the UEMS, October 1993
ICMART LEXICON of Medical Acupuncture, accessed August 2013, http://www.icmart.org/files/icmart_lexicon_medical_acupuncture.pdf
Ordem dos Médicos Portugal, Critérios de Reconhecimento de Cursos de Pós‐Graduação em Acupunctura Médica e Obtenção da Competência em Acupunctura Médica, 2010.
Edited by the ICMART Board