On 3/19/2020, our community acupuncture clinic closed along with other businesses in NM per the Governor’s Order. Along with everyone else in the world, we had to decide how we could continue to be of service so we came up with the telehealth idea. We think of it as a way to treat your non-life-threatening issues that will not go away during the several months that this pandemic is expected to affect our lives. In addition, we will be contributing to the healthcare system efforts by dealing with non-COVID conditions like migraines, anxiety, asthma, sleeplessness or high blood pressure that would put an added burden on the regular healthcare system. Some time later, we were excited to read that the World Federation of Acupuncture and Moxibustion Societies had developed protocols for COVID-19 treatments. In China they did exactly this – coached patients in self-treatment via WeChat especially during the prevention and convalescence phases of the disease.
So as of 4/1/20, we were happy to announce to our current patients that we will be doing remote (video) Chinese medicine telehealth consultations. If interested, you can book from our clinic booking page. We will decide on the modalities that we think are best for your condition. These can include acupressure, ear acupressure seeds, moxibustion (burning herbs), liniments or patches, Chinese herbs and other modalities.
For Medical Practitioners: Although we are offering this service for our existing patients, if you feel that it could benefit one of your patients and help relieve the burden on your clinic during the COVID-19 surge, we will accept patients on a referral from an MD, PA, or NP. Just email patient first name and last initial to firstname.lastname@example.org. No need to tell us anything more, we will look out for the patient’s communication. Do let us know if there is anything specific you would like us to do or not do.
What will an acupuncture telehealth appointment look like?
These appointments are currently just for existing patients, or for patients with a direct referral from an MD, NP, or PA. You will need to email us at email@example.com for an initial passcode to get into the booking page.
First you will book a telehealth assessment online and pay $45-70 sliding scale, (includes Oriental Medicine kit which we will mail to you.)
We will call you at your appointment time, via the app that you indicate, and will do a diagnosis and treatment plan. We ask that you limit your main complaint to the one pressing issue, so that we can simplify your treatment. We will then mail you either an Oriental medicine kit or herbs or acupressure kit depending on our assessment. If indicated we will send you custom acupressure point maps for your condition.
We will set up a follow-up training appointment (sliding scale $30-50) within four days. In the meantime you will practice your point location.
We may decide that Chinese herbs are the best solution for you. If so we will assess what form you are willing to take them (teas or pills). Pills usually cost $14 (plus P & P) for 6-8 days. Herbal teas cost about $5 a day. If we send you teas we will only send up to two days worth to start with to see how you get along with taking them.
After that you will treat yourself on a schedule and make another appointment if you need your point location or technique checking, or if your symptoms change and you need a new plan. We may want to see you on a regular basis but we will tell you so if that is the case.
For Doctors of Oriental Medicine
If you would like to continue your role in this crisis and have closed your clinic, you can still participate either by joining the NM Integrative Wellness Medical Reserve Corps or by affiliating with PHANM by sending us an email with this PHANM – DOM MOU dt Public Health Emergency Order 03-25-20 20.4.10 attached. The intent of the affiliation is to see pro bono PHANM patients or your own paying patients remotely and teach them self care techniques in order to relieve the burden on the healthcare system during the COVID surge.