President's Report - Much Accomplished and More on the Horizon
As I am finishing up my term as president and my third year volunteering with the board, I am so proud of the work that has been accomplished and the opportunity I have had to serve with these fellow practitioners. I am absolutely confident that the organization will continue to grow with the members serving on the board. I also invite anyone who is passionate about our medicine and who wants to become more active in the community to come to the board meetings and volunteer on a committee or on the board. It will broaden your understanding of what it takes to be a licensed healthcare practitioner in the US and to keep the practice of our medicine growing in our state.
This past year has been trying for those that practice injection therapy, but we have made some amazing progress towards resolving that issue. We have worked closely with the Colorado Medical Society in our attempts to re-gain the ability to procure injectable substances and I can’t recall another time when our two organizations have collaborated to this degree. We have built bridges that will continue to serve us for years to come.
We also met with Insurance Commissioner Salazar and her staff regarding attaining Essential Health Benefits status under the Affordable Care Act in Colorado. We are now awaiting the announcement of the group of plans from which the next model health plan will be chosen and will then continue to advocate for the selection of a plan that includes Acupuncture as a covered benefit.
We also have another project coming up this summer that I am really excited about. It is extremely important that we have your most recent contact information to keep you informed of these important events. While I cannot go in to too much detail now, I promise that it is something that we will all celebrate. We will need your help to get as many people involved as possible, so please, reach out to other acupuncturists and spread the word.
Again, I want to express what an honor it has been to serve with my colleagues on the board. In speaking with past AAC presidents they have been impressed at the level of cooperation and community that we have. While I am looking forward to having a little more time when my term is complete at the end of this month, I promise that I will continue to be involved and assist however I can.
Thank you all for the opportunity to represent our profession and this wonderful community of healers in Colorado.
Vice President's Report - You are an Acupuncturist!
Some of you may or may not know that our profession hasn't had a Standard Occupational Classification Code (SOC) designation with the Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS). The NCCAOM has been working diligently to get us a designation and it appears that it will be happening soon. Even though the designation will not be completely official until the comment and review period is complete in 2017, you are an Acupuncturist and should be using that word as your profession or occupation in any legal or tax documents. For example, when you file your taxes your occupation should be listed as "Acupuncturist."
This consistency allows data collection on employment, unemployment, salaries, etc., so we can get funding and create jobs. It will help open doors to working in hospitals and could lead to student loan forgiveness. So when the Census knocks on your door and asks you what your profession is you say “Acupuncturist!” We know you do A LOT more than just acupuncture but this designation will help legitimize our profession. For more information on the NCCAOM’s efforts visit http://www.nccaom.org/bls.
Kimberley Benjamin, L.Ac.
This past year has been an incredibly busy one for the AAC. We do our best to keep you up-to-date with our quarterly newsletters. As Scott wrote in the President's report, there has been a lot going on legally regarding Injectables and our right to procure them, as well as our efforts to gain Essential Health Benefits status under the ACA. Dry Needling continues to be a concern and we will be posting informative documents on our website. Please stay tuned.
Our Vice President Kimberley Benjamin has been keeping us apprised of developments in the Council of State Associations and along with our new board member Yvonne Piper attended their annual conference in March. The CSA is the most inclusive organization yet achieved in our profession and is tirelessly working to support the states in their legislative, education, publication and professional efforts on behalf of their association members.
The November election kept our Legislative chair George Graf busy attending events to educate candidates about acupuncturists and our concerns. Thanks to those who responded to our call for donations, of the 20 candidates we supported, 15 retained or gained seats in the house and senate. We look forward to a productive relationship with the legislature during future efforts.
Fundraising chair Sue West has been busy coordinating efforts to simultaneously support our organization and help practitioners by developing a Power Point presentation about Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine that can be used to educate your patients, referring practitioners and community. Her committee, including Anne Chew, Mark Van Otterloo and Yvonne Piper, has created and loaded this presentation and other helpful documents and articles onto a USB flashdrive that is available for a nominal donation.
Jacqui Strike, our Public Relations chair has been busy posting to our Social Media and coordinating volunteers to run Interactive Educational Centers about acupuncture for the 9News health fairs. Donating time to this worthy cause helps people understand our medicine while gaining valuable exposure for your practice. Please keep this in mind and plan to sign up next spring!
We continue to support the first all-acupuncture medical reserve corps in the nation, the CAMRC. Please visit their booth and consider becoming a volunteer. Their trainings are free and offer 10 pda’s toward NCCAOM recertification.
Our Student Representative Brittney Chowning has been getting fellow CSTCM students involved. She coordinated a forum at the school to introduce a survey to find out how we can better serve our student members and what their concerns are.
In addition to lending her expertise to many of the board’s efforts our conference chair Stephanie Shober has coordinated this amazing record-breaking conference that we hope that you enjoy.
Last but not least, our Office Manager Charissa Haines has continued to support us in innumerable ways. Please make sure to thank her if you have the opportunity to call or email the office.
Looking forward to seeing you at the conference! If you can’t attend, I welcome the opportunity to speak with you and hear any ideas or concerns you may have.
Robin L. Schiesser, L.Ac., Dipl. OM
The AAC is off to a great start this year. We are making progress in replenishing our accounts after our recent years of large legal expenses. These expenses included the Sunset Review of our Practice Act to keep our profession regulated in Colorado, and defense against dry needling. We have big goals for the coming years, and really need to get our membership numbers up. We currently have a powerhouse board dedicated to seeing some huge issues through, so now is the time to get your friends to join. Let's see what we can accomplish together!
Katie Robinette, L.Ac.
Treasurer, Acupuncture Association of Colorado
Conference & Community Chair Report -
2015 Conference will be a Record-Breaker
This is my second year volunteering on the AAC Board and it has been an honor. The knowledge and dedication of my fellow Board members are consistently impressive.
The upcoming 32nd Annual Acupuncture Association of Colorado Conference being held April 25-26 in Colorado Springs has set an all-time record of 123 attendees for our state conferences! Meeting the venue capacity forced us to cap registration on Saturday when we will be learning from Master Jeffrey Yuen. There are still a few spots open for Sunday's excellent classes with Dr. Daisy Dong and Dr. Butch Levy. Please click here for more information and to register.
The annual conference is held in April for a couple of reasons. In election years, an early conference allows us time to come together as a group to hear about issues and candidates that effect acupuncture and Oriental Medicine in time to take action. We also hope by following spring break time, the April conference finds many people in town and able to attend. Our conference is the one fundraiser that, added to membership dues, keeps us going.
The annual business meeting of the Association being held during lunch on Saturday is a requirement of our by-laws and the one opportunity each year that we have as a group to learn what is happening legislatively for our profession, to brainstorm, and set goals.
I look forward to spending time together as a group and learning new things from the great line-up of speakers we have scheduled. See you in April!
Stephanie Shober, L.Ac.
Community Committee & Conference Chair
Fundraising Report - Power Point Acupuncture Presentation on USB Flash Drive!
I am so looking forward to seeing everyone at the 2015 AAC Conference; we are all very excited about our speakers and the entire event! I want to thank so many people who have put this together, but especially Stephanie Shober─ she has put her heart and soul into this conference.
With the opportunity to see so many of you, I will be introducing our new fundraiser this year:
USB flash drives pre-loaded with ways to educate your community! The drives will be available for a minimal donation. If you will not be able to attend the conference but would like more information, please do not hesitate to contact me at Fundraising@acucol.com.
On the 4GB flash drives we have included:
- A customizable Power Point Presentation about Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
- Documents for you, your patients, professional contacts and community
- Media coverage on Acupuncture
- Patient education for display in your front office
- The opportunity to add additional material that we will forward as it becomes available
Of course at the conference we will also be highlighting our continuing opportunities with Zen Vault, which offers secure storage and transmittal of medical records, and Banctek, offering low-cost merchant credit card processing services. Please visit Mark VanOtterloo and me at the Fundraising Table along with our other Vendors. I look forward to seeing you all.
Sue West, L.Ac.
Public Relations Report - Opportunities to Boost Your and the AAC's PR
I am encouraged and astonished at how vibrant our Acupuncture community has become. It is fantastic to see the droves of volunteers pouring out to educate and assist our communities through the 9 News Health Fair and The CAMRC (Colorado Acupuncture Medical Reserve Corps).
My term on the Board of the AAC is drawing to a close. If you are an enthusiastic self-starter, I encourage you to apply to head the PR department by writing me at PRCOMM@acucol.com.
In this position you will be a member of the AAC board for the next 3 years and your tasks will include creating and managing the subcommittees that oversee The 9 News Health Fair, AOM Day, Social Media (Facebook, YouTube, Google+, Yahoo groups). Bring your new blood to the table. This position has been extremely rewarding for me over the last 3 years. I shall value and cherish all the friendships and connections I have forged. I have no doubt I shall always be an integral and reliant volunteer for the AAC and I look forward to passing on my knowledge to the new PR Chairperson.
The 9 News Health Fair is great way to connect with Healthcare leaders in your community as well as an ideal opportunity to introduce your clinic to patients in your community. The Aurora, Mississippi Avenue Baptist church (Mississippi and I-225), needs a volunteer for the Tuesday, April 21st Fair from 7am to noon. You may sign up here or email me for more information at PRCOMM@acucol.com.
Thanks to all the volunteers who are serving their community and spreading the good word about acupuncture.
Wishing you enthusiasm and exceptional health,
Jacqui Strike, L.Ac.
Public Relations Committee Chair
Communications Co-Chair Report - Can You Help With Our Phone Tree Project?
Thank you to all the "phone tree-ers" who have helped us as we update our email list for all acupuncturists practicing in Colorado. DORA (the Department of Registrations) does not provide us with emails, so we are collecting them one phone call at a time. Our project is not yet complete, but we are on our way. Please forgive us if you receive a call and you are already get our emails, we do our best to use up-to-date records. Always let us know if you change your contact information so we can keep our list current and keep you informed.
Being a "phone tree-er" is a valuable asset to the AAC; it allows us to contact many people in a short time. If you would like to become a volunteer "phone tree-er", you can call or email me using the contact information below. You will also have an opportunity to sign up if you are attending our conference at the end of the month. At last year’s conference a Legislative Phone Tree project was initiated. If you were on that list and wish to volunteer again, we thank you and ask that you sign up anew. We understand that events happen in our lives that keep us from having extra time to devote to a volunteer project, so if you sign up and for some reason aren’t able to help when called upon, please let us know. Thank you for your support of our profession!
Sa'bura Goodban, L.Ac.
Your Free Download of the
Spring Issue of Meridians Journal is Ready!
The spring issue, v. 2 #2, of Meridians: The Journal of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine is now online! This and all issues are available free to you as a valuable benefit as an AAC member. To access your download just create a new account at their websiteand self-certify that you are a member of a State Association. You will be able to place an "order" for the zero-cost PDF downloads. You do not have to do this for each issue, just for the first time you access them. After initially registering, all you have to do is log in when a new issue is uploaded.
If you have any questions about access to the online issues, please feel free to contact the webmaster, Brian Smither, at email@example.com. He will be happy to assist you so you can read this issue and all issues of Meridians JAOM.
Colorado Acupuncture Medical Reserve Corps
Update and Upcoming May & June Trainings
2015 has already been an amazing and eventful year for the CAMRC. February marked the one-year anniversary since forming the first nationally-recognized acupuncture-only Medical Reserve Corps in the United States. Our volunteer membership has grown quickly and steadily, and now includes over 70 Colorado Acupuncturists and other NADA-certified practitioners.
Last month, the CAMRC offered its first Durango-area training with the help of the amazing Durango Acupuncture Alliance. We appreciate the show of support from everyone who participated and extend a warm welcome to our newest members in Southwest Colorado!
In May and June of this year, we will be offering two more trainings in Denver and Colorado Springs. Each weekend course will prepare volunteers to participate in a CAMRC disaster relief effort. The training will cover the structure of the unit, the mobilization process, the logistics of setting up and operating a mobile disaster relief clinic, the roles volunteers may find themselves in, as well as information on the NADA protocol. The training also includes a bonus 3-hour ICS 100/700 level course and certification for FEMA's Incident Command System basic instruction (a requirement for CAMRC membership). As always, these trainings are complimentary and offer 10 CEU's. What's not to love?
Please stop by and talk to us at the CAMRC booth at the upcoming conference in April with the AAC, to whom we owe tons of gratitude for their help and tireless efforts to support the practice of acupuncture in Colorado. Find out more about the organization and what you can do to support public health, your profession and your community!
Use Your AAC Member Benefits!
The AAC is always looking for new benefits to offer members that increase the value of your membership. In addition to keeping our "fingers on the pulse" (so to speak) of important issues affecting the practice of acupuncture in our state and advocating for your profession in the legislature, some your current benefits are:
- Discounted CEU seminars (All seminars announced on the AAC list offer at least a 10% discount to AAC members.)
- Discounted registration on all AAC conferences
- Discounts with AcupunctureMediaWorks.com (10% off first order / 5% off all other orders)
- Low-cost merchant credit card services with Banctek
- 20% off premium personal medical records storage and transmittal with Zen Vault for you and your patients with code AAC20
- $15 discount on a one-year listing with alternativesforhealing.com
- 5% discounts with purchases from OMS/Lhasa, Blue Poppy and Redwing Books
- 6% Discount on Malpractice Insurance from Wood Insurance Group (Professional Members only)
- Free digital copy of Meridians, a quarterly peer-reviewed Oriental Medicine journal (See announcement above)
- We are currently in negotiations with Colorado Medical Waste to provide affordable Sharps disposal for our members that is more environmentally sustainable while being price competitive with mail-away disposal. Stay tuned for more information!
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There are options to becoming a member of the AAC. You can make a once yearly payment or use our automatic monthly payment option. Click on the link below. The PayPal option is fully-functional and we appreciate your patience as we continue to work to rectify any difficulties you may experience with our other payment options.
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If you have any questions, please feel free to call Charissa Haines at the AAC Office at 303-572-8744 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org