Ever since President Nixon visited China in 1972 and saw firsthand the power of acupuncture, the popularity of this ancient form of Traditional Chinese Medicine has grown significantly. With continued acceptance and increased recognition, the future of acupuncture appears beyond bright. If you’re considering becoming a professional acupuncturist, the timing is perfect.
It’s increasingly recognized.
Acupuncture has been an important part of America’s health care system for over 40 years. If you know the history of acupuncture in the U.S. you probably know that the IRS authorized acupuncture as a deductible medical expense in 1972. And in 1997, the U.S. National Institute of Health formally recognized the practice in mainstream medicine.
It’s sought after.
Nearly 35 million Americans receive acupuncture treatments on a regular basis. The U.S. Department of Defense authorizes the use of acupuncture for pain management for soldiers and enlisted military. Plus, nearly every major hospital in America has an acupuncture department.
With the Affordable Care Act, most Americans are required to have health insurance. At the same time, more insurance companies are covering acupuncture. This means the population of people having benefits for acupuncture is increasing.
It’s being taught more often – in more places.
As more patients demand alternative and integrative modalities, many top medical schools are including introductory courses in the use and benefits of acupuncture.
It’s a growing field.
According to LearnHealthCare.net, a resource for students and professionals interested in health care careers, the field of acupuncture is expected to grow as much as 32% by 2022. In addition, the site asserts that “average acupuncturist salaries for job postings nationwide are 31% higher than average salaries for all job postings nationwide.”
Based on these trends, the future of acupuncture appears strong, and career opportunities for acupuncturists are limitless. Right now, there are fewer than 50 accredited acupuncture colleges in America. Most of these are small private schools, like AMC, that are graduating approximately 100 to 2,000 future acupuncture physicians per year. The demand for acupuncturists, on the other hand, is in the tens of thousands per year. Recognizing these figures, many experts believe there will be a shortage of acupuncture physicians in the near future.
Acupuncturists not only are in demand, they also have the ability to create flexible schedules, working full or part time in a variety of settings. Many acupuncturists are self-employed and perform treatments in patients’ homes. Others work at alternative medicine centers, oriental medicine centers, chiropractors’ offices, or cancer centers and in collaboration with other natural healing professionals like massage therapists and naturopaths.
If you’re considering becoming an acupuncturist, it is an ideal time to pursue an education and embrace this growing field. For more information about starting acupuncture school in beautiful Miami, Florida, request a course catalog. And to find out “Everything You Need to Know About a Career in Acupuncture,” download our free ebook.