Call To Action:
Please email the Division of Insurance
The Public Comment Period for Acupuncture to be an Essential Health Benefit in Colorado is open!
Please remember to send a letter to the DOI. The due date is 4/30 but the sooner you contact them, the better.
Here is the info you need:
Where to send: please email Kate Harris (Kate.Harris@state.co.us) and Leilani Russell (Leilani.Russell@state.co.us) before 5pm on Friday April 30th, 2021.
Why you should write: Currently, acupuncture services are not considered an EHB in Colorado, but they could be in 2023! The Division of Insurance (DOI) is recommending acupuncture become an EHB with a minimum of 6 treatments. This is a fantastic opportunity, and there is room for improvement by mandating a minimum of 12-20 visits instead of 6. Even if you don’t currently work with insurance in your practice, please write to let them know how many acupuncture sessions are needed to successfully treat chronic conditions. This is an effort to uplift the entire profession.
Who should write: Your patients, and you.
Your patients can let decision makers know why acupuncture is important to their health. They should talk about the conditions that have been successfully treated and how many visits they want as consumers.
You can let decision makers know briefly how acupuncture helps your patients and the necessity for more than 6 treatments. (see sample below)
What you can write:
A sample letter to patients asking for their help:
How has acupuncture helped you? How many sessions did it take to resolve your issue?
Could you please take a few minutes to let the Department of Insurance know how much acupuncture therapy has helped you and how many sessions you think should be made available to you as a consumer?
To submit comments on the proposed changes to the benchmark plan please email Kate Harris (Kate.Harris@state.co.us) and Leilani Russell (Leilani.Russell@state.co.us) before 5pm on Friday April 30th, 2021.
A sample letter from patients to the DOI:
Thank you for your work in updating Colorado's benchmark plan for Essential Health Benefits. As a person who uses acupuncture, I depend on acupuncture therapy to reduce pain and increase my quality of life. In general, seeing an acupuncturist every other week has kept me out of the hospital and off of opioid medication. As a consumer, I ask that you consider expanding acupuncture coverage for chronic conditions so that I can continue seeing my practitioner weekly.
A sample letter from acupuncturists to the DOI:
Thank you for your work on updating Colorado's Benchmark Plan for Essential Health Benefits.
We are grateful that acupuncture services are being considered in the Benchmark Plan.
Acupuncture therapy helps individuals to manage pain and has been shown to reduce opioid dependency and usage.
Unfortunately, a minimum of 6 sessions is not enough to tackle most pain cases. Research has shown that when using acupuncture for chronic pain, a minimum of 10 sessions is recommended and more treatment might be required depending on the condition.
The Veteran's Affairs(VA) and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS )offer 20 sessions per calendar year, with the opportunity to seek additional treatment when deemed necessary.
I respectfully ask that you consider increasing the limited number of sessions for acupuncture therapy to 20 sessions per year based on clinical research and national recommendations.
Here is a folder of files regarding the Colorado Division of Insurance for your information:https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/16HGzRJYpPJ3KQNepXmNdMg7pq1hmTofa
Thank you for advocating for our profession!
Acupuncture Association of Colorado
13918 E. Mississippi Ave., #67482
Aurora, CO 80012