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Title17,700 oriental medicinepractitioners would be needed in the next 10 years.2017-03-07 12:25:34

practitioners.  Complementary and alternative medicine has been immensely popular in the United States since the 1990s and is regularly used by more than one-third of adult Americans.  Today, complementary and alternative medicine comprises herbal medicines, dietary supplements, and yoga, as well as provider-based services such as chiropractic care, massage therapy, acupuncture, and Oriental Medicine.   A study done by Harvard Medical School confirms that this trend will continue in the future. The Journal of the American Medical Association History of Chinese Medicine in the U.S.:

•    In 1972, a newspaper columnist for the N.Y. Times newspaper (James Reston) wrote an article about the benefits of acupuncture he received while recovering from an appendectomy in China when former President Nixon made his historic visit to that country.

•    In 1975, the first acupuncture school in the U.S. was established.

•  In 1982, The National Certification Commission of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) was established.

. In 1985, the first NCCAOM Comprehensive Written Examination (CWE) in Acupuncture (ACP) was given.

• In 1993, a television documentary and companion book entitled “Healing and the Mind” by prominent American journalist Bill Moyers were published; national surveys were showing significant use by the American public of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), including acupuncture.

•  In 1996, regulatory action of the Food and Drug Administration reclassified acupuncture needles from the category of “investigational devices” subject to cautionary labeling to the category of devices that are safe and effective

•  In 2002, Presidential (White House) Commission on Complementary and Alternative Medicine Policy report concerning CAM (including acupuncture) was published.

•   In 2005,  the Office of Alternative Medicine (currently the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health --NCCIH) was created. 

•    March 2016, the Interagency Pain Research Coordinating Committee (IPRCC) released a National Pain Strategy. The strategy recommends, among other solutions to chronic pain management, “the development of a system of patient-center pain management practices” that include Oriental Medicine techniques, most prominent among them, acupuncture.

Complementary and alternative medicine services in the United States are an approximately $27 billion market each year.  Extrapolations to the US population suggest a 47% increase in the total number of visits to alternative medicine (JAMA) article states that the majority of alternative medicine users find these health care alternatives to be more congruent with their values, beliefs and philosophical orientations towards health and life.


The US Labor Department predicted that 17,700 oriental medicinepractitioners would be needed in the next 10 years.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) latest salary updates, health diagnosing and treating practitioners, such as an acupuncturist, earn a median annual salary of $73,400.