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National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine(R) Applauds the National Association of Attorneys General Initiative in Fight Against Opioid Crisis


October 30, 2017 - Jacksonville, FL

The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM)®, which has long stressed the importance of non-drug approaches to chronic pain, commends the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) for its September 18th letter encouraging healthcare providers to prioritize non-opioid pain management options over opioid prescriptions for the treatment of chronic pain. The letter addresses the necessity for doctors to explore, prescribe and refer patients for effective non-drug treatments such as acupuncture.

In agreeance with NAAG, NCCAOM states that more emphasis must be placed on integrative treatments, such as acupuncture, which is effective in treating chronic pain and substance abuse addiction. A 2015 study by Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard University, supports that repeated acupuncture treatment "may reduce or eliminate the need for opioids by restoring the balance in the connectivity of the key pain brain regions, altering pain-related attention and memory."

Devastated by the opioid crisis, America has been experiencing an increase in addiction to prescription pain relievers. According to the Federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, more than 11 million Americans misused prescription opioids in 2016, nearly 1 million used heroin, and 2.1 million had an opioid use disorder due to prescription opioids or heroin.

NCCAOM joins NAAG's call to America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) to take proactive steps in combatting the opioid epidemic through the revision of coverage policies for non-opioid pain treatments.

Just this week, President Trump declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency, which would free up much needed resources to treat the thousands addicted to opioids. The NCCAOM encourages the Trump administration to include acupuncture services as one of the solutions to the opioid crisis as NCCAOM National Board Certified Acupuncturists are in a position to successfully treat those who are addicted to opioids as well as treat their pain effectively and at little cost.

The NCCAOM's mission is to assure the safety and well-being of the public and promote national evidence-based standards of competence. The NCCAOM is the only nationally accredited certification organization that assures entry-level competency for licensed acupuncturists. NCCAOM Nationally Board Certified Acupuncturists™ receive years of education and training in many methods of acupuncture therapies for the treatment of pain, as well as a wide variety of other health conditions.

To learn more about how acupuncture can help with pain management visit the NCCAOM's Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine News and Resource Center. To find an NCCAOM Nationally Board Certified™ practitioner in your area, click on Find a Practitioner at www.nccaom.org.

About NCCAOM®
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM)® is a non-profit 501(c)(6) organization established in 1982. NCCAOM is the only national organization that validates entry-level competency in the practice of acupuncture and Oriental medicine (AOM) through professional certification. NCCAOM certification or a passing score on the NCCAOM certification examinations are documentation of competency for licensure as an acupuncturist by 46 states plus the District of Columbia which represents 98% of the states that regulate acupuncture. All NCCAOM certification programs are currently accredited by the National Commission for Certification Agencies (NCCA). To learn more about the NCCAOM and the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates, and to find an NCCAOM Nationally Board Certified Acupuncturists™ visit www.nccaom.org.

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