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Massachusetts Laws & Details

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Practitioner Title

Licensed Acupuncturist (L.Ac.)


Formal Education Requirements:  Must have successfully completed 2 years of training in one or more acupuncture schools, shall have graduated from a Committee on Acupuncture-approved schools; must have a minimum of 1,350 clinical and didactic training and 30 hours of Committee on Acupuncture-approved herbal education.  An applicant must document 100 hours of clinic with sole responsibility for diagnosis and treatment of patients within the required 1,350 hours of acupuncture education.  If the school is in the U.S., District of Columbia, Puerto Rico or a U.S. territory, it must be accredited by, or in candidacy status with, ACAOM

Undergraduate Requirements:  2 academic years at an accredited university or college, including courses in human anatomy and physiology and general biology.

Other Eligibility Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years old, of good moral character and demonstrate sufficient knowledge of the English language so that he or she may be understood; or have a translator available to communicate with patients.  Passage of the NCCAOM exam, a clean needle technique course or the Massachusetts oral exam in English gives presumption of competency.  The committee requires passage of the TOEFL with a minimum score of 550.  An applicant who fails to demonstrate proficiency in English shall provide the committee with the name and address of his or her interpreter.

Herbal Therapy: A licensee who wishes to use herbal therapy, patent or raw herbs, must obtain committee approval by submitting evidence of: (1) completion of ACAOM accredited or candidate status oriental medicine program; (2) completion of an herbal medicine program offered by a ACAOM accredited or candidate school that meets ACAOM curriculum requirements regarding herbal medicine or (3) completion of a program that is substantially equivalent to or exceeds the ACAOM curriculum requirements regarding herbal medicine.

Practice by Others

Medical doctors and osteopaths may practice acupuncture in Massachusetts without any specific training.

Acupuncture is not within the scope of practice of chiropractors, podiatrists or physician assistants.

Licensed physicians and physical therapists are exempted by statute for transcutaneous nerve stimulation.

NOTE: Look for a physician with formal training in the practice of acupuncture. Acupuncture and Oriental medicine is an art and a science that takes years to master. While any licensed physician can stick needles into you, for a positive experience and results, find an acupuncturist with experience treating a similar condition (with acupuncture) to what you have.

Governmental Body

Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Board of Registration in Medicine
Committee on Acupuncture

560 Harrison Avenue, Suite G-4
Boston, MA 02118
(617) 654-9810
(617) 426-9358 (Fax)

Local Organizations

Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Society of Massachusetts
P.O. Box 775
Beverly, MA 01915
(781) 893-2185

Find an Acupuncturist in Massachusetts with – Acupuncture Referrals Click Here.

Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine and acupuncturists in: Acton Arlington Boston Boxboro Brighton Brookline Burlington Cambridge Chelmsford Dartmouth Florence Framingham Hamilton Holden Jamaica Plain Milton Natick Needham Newton Newton Highlands Quincy Randolph Sandwich Somerville Sturbridge Sudbury Waltham Watertown Wellesley Wellesley Hills West Barnstable Westford West Roxbury W. Concord Woburn Woods Hole Worcester