Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine Frequently Asked Questions | Washington State Department of Health – Washington State Department of Health

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The Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine Advisory Committee consists of five members. Four members must be an acupuncturist or acupuncture and Eastern medicine practitioner licensed in Washington State with no less than five years’ experience in the practice of Acupuncture and Eastern medicine. They must be actively engaged in practice within two years of appointment. The fifth member must be appointed from the public at large, and must have an interest in the rights of consumers of health services. All members are appointed by the secretary of the Department of Health. Each member of the committee must be a resident of Washington State.
If you or someone you know is interested in applying for appointment, see this webpage for more information. In addition, please submit a current resume.
Substitute House Bill (SHB) 1045, passed during the 2015 legislative session, and amended the law relating to East Asian medicine practitioners. The new law was effective July 24, 2015. The law removed the requirement for licensees to submit a written plan for consultation, emergency transfer and referral to other health care practitioners. After July 24, 2015, the written plan is no longer required to be submitted with the initial application for licensure or annually with the license renewal fee.
You may refer to yourself as an acupuncturist, licensed acupuncturist, acupuncture and Eastern medicine practitioner, or a combination of any of these.
An acupuncture and Eastern medicine practitioner may not use the title “doctor,” “Dr.,” or “Ph.D.” on any advertising or other printed material unless the nature of the degree is clearly stated.
No. A practitioner should never perform a technique he or she is not adequately trained in or comfortable providing.
The law allows a person to do the following techniques or services without being licensed as an acupuncturist or acupuncture and Eastern medicine practitioner:
The techniques or services listed above may be within the scope of practice for another health care profession. You may need to hold another health care credential in order to perform them.
You may continue the patient’s treatment only after the patient signs a written waiver. The waiver acknowledges the risks associated with failure to pursue treatment from a primary health care provider.
Law requires the waiver to include:
You may find a sample of the written waiver here (PDF).
You may find a sample of the scope of practice and qualifications here.
You must pass the following National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) examinations:
You must also pass the Council of Colleges of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (CCAOM) clean needle technique course.
Effective July 28, 2019 training by apprenticeship and/or tutorial is no longer available.
Yes, but the law changed the requirements for licensing. You must now obtain a credentialing evaluation report from the International Consultants of Delaware (ICD). You must have the report sent directly from the ICD to the department.
Yes, the rule now has a three year time limit. Refer to WAC 246-803-400 “Inactive Status for Requirements.”
You may contact the Customer Service Office by phone at 360-236-4700 or by email at
Refer to WAC 246-12-040 – How to return to active status when a credential has expired.
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