First-Professional Doctorate Action Alert!

On the weekend of February 11th to 14th, 2010, the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM) will hold its annual commissioners meeting.  At this meeting, the fate of the first-professional doctorate (FPD) in AOM will be decided as to whether or not ACAOM can petition the US Department of Education (USDE) to develop standards for and enable schools to pilot a FPD.  If ACAOM decides that there is consensus from all stakeholders in the AOM community, and the USDE agrees, acupuncture schools may begin to appeal to their state department of education to pilot these programs. This is a necessary step toward changing the entry-level for the profession from the masters to the doctorate level.


As it is the perspective of the CAN board and a large portion of its membership that such a shift is NOT in the best interest of the students, practitioners, employers, patients and the general public and, in fact, violates the principles of access to education, access to care, equal rights, sustainability and social justice, CAN is taking a strong stance of opposition to the first-professional doctorate.  With that in mind, it is our collective task to organize and to act.

What is needed from the CAN community is urgent, focused and direct action in order to challenge power and protect the public.  To that end, the board has conceived of a series of direct actions that will harness the power of the CAN community and ensure that it is clear that consensus does not exist on the matter of the FPD.  The CAN community consists of students, practitioners, educators, employers, administration staff, patients and the public.  Organizing these intersecting groups of people is our immediate goal.  To achieve this end, we have coordinated a series of tactics and actions that capitalize on the collective power of our broad community. We have created a series of threads in the FPD forums for each tactic. There are support threads for students, practitioners, employers, administration and staff, patients, patient signature gathering for clinics, and educators.  These threads are designed to offer assistance to the particulars of implementing these tactics for each particular group.  For instance, if you own a clinic, there is a support thread for you to ask any questions about gathering signatures from your patient community.  Questions about how to go about gathering signatures from your patient community with little disruption to overall clinic flow can be asked here.  If you have a question, post.  In the true CAN fashion, others will be there to offer advice and assistance and you can figure out what works best for your situation.  Keep in mind that you may fall into several of these catagories and should act accordingly. 

For each category we will also have a data gathering thread.  We want to know who is doing what so that we are able to understand how much of an impact our actions will have.  We also want to know which folks we are going to have to annoy the hell out of to get their butts in gear!  Please go to the FPD forum, download the documents that are there and start organizing.  We have also composed Fact and Myth sheets in regards to the FPD.  These documents are meant to stimulate discussion and generate as many questions as they answer. It must be stated that what really matters in determining the presence or lack of consensus for the FPD are physical documents from concerned stakeholders sent to ACAOM.  We can talk all we like.  What is truly needed, however, is action.  CAN is a fantastic umbrella organization for the CA movement at the national level.  Defeating the FPD will require real grassroots activism from all of us at the local level.  We all must do our part.

Us board folk will be really trying to organize the lot of our members over the next couple of months.  We may email you.  We may call you.Don’t make us come to your homes.  Wink The deadline for any written/fax submissions to ACAOM is January 15th. Comments must be submitted via fax at 301-313-0912 or regular mail (ACAOM, 7501 Greenway Center Drive, Maryland Trade Center 3, Suite 760, Greenbelt, MD 20770).  Get in the FPD forums and start organizing!  The people united can never be defeated!

We believe that the values of access to education, access to care, equal rights, sustainability, and social justice are integral to the practice of any medical discipline and that the FPD violates these critical social values.  The brilliance of CA and the core reason for its unprecedented success in delivering acupuncture care to people of ordinary income, is that CA marries these culturally ingrained and familiar values, beliefs and sensibilities with that which is culturally unfamiliar, namely, acupuncture.  If you are a CA practitioner, how many times have you heard someone say in your clinic, “I just love what you are doing here!  I have told everyone I know about this place.”  Why is this sentiment so common in CA communities?  It is because our cultures core values are reflected in CA; access to education and practice, access to care, sustainability, equal rights and social justice propel and define CA.  Our communities recognize this and respond.  This is what makes CA so popular, appreciated and utilized.

The mere fact that acupuncture is a viable modality for chronic pain and stress has had little resonance with our communities of interest and acupuncture institutions have heretofore attempted to leach onto familiar aspects of our culture in an attempt to gain traction.  Hence, the spa approach and the medical approach to acupuncture care and delivery taught in schools and consumed by a thin slice of the public in our society.  It is in the medical vein that the FPD comes along.It is another move by the establishment in a line of failures to increase the market share of a product that few are buying.  What we now must voice as a community is a collective “NO!”  We will bring the concerns and voices of un-represented stakeholders to the attention of the larger AOM community and demand that the professional organizations’ long-term planning and data gathering processes address them.  Only by refocusing the goals of the AOM profession toward patient care, access, affordability regarding both care and education can the type of wide-spread use and acceptance of AOM that is desired by all stakeholders be realized.  The FPD will only exacerbate existing problems with education and practice, care and delivery.  The time to defeat the first-professional doctorate has come.

This story was posted on November 17 2009 by LarryG.
Tags: acaom fpd

Comments

  • November 17 2009 at 12:21 PM
    LarryG writes:

    lag time

    links and threads forthcoming.

      0 likes
  • November 17 2009 at 1:23 PM
    LarryG writes:

    done

    links, threads and file attachments are in place. (Forgive some of the formatting issues on the threads.)

    Start organizing!

      0 likes
  • November 17 2009 at 1:58 PM
    Jessica Feltz writes:

    “The time to defeat the first-professional doctorate has come.”

    Amen to that.

      0 likes
  • November 17 2009 at 2:24 PM
    River Jordan writes:

    How many heads

    does this monster have? Guess we have to go all out this time and slay the FPD insanity dragon with direct action which involves all of our patients. I just faxed my practitioner letter to ACAOM - (only took 5 minutes to print, sign and fax), and will post some patient petitions at the clinic later today. Thanks Larry, Jessica and everyone else behind this latest campaign.

      0 likes
  • November 17 2009 at 2:27 PM
    LarryG writes:

    atta boy

    !you rock, jordan!

     

      0 likes
  • November 17 2009 at 9:50 PM
    River Jordan writes:

    first patient question

    My first patient signed the patient, but asked me if I needed any further information (i.e. In order to have a valid petition, do we only need to collect signatures, or do we also need printed names, etc.)?

      0 likes
  • November 17 2009 at 10:01 PM
    LarryG writes:

    looking into it, jordan

    but direct these types of questions to the Patient Petition From Clinics Support Thread 

    since we’ve had two questions like this, i will look into it further.  

      0 likes
  • November 18 2009 at 6:21 PM
    Guest writes:

    Tangent…

    Out of curiosity, why is our medicine here titled “acupuncture”? The word itself is not very illuminating to the varied treatment methods employed within “Chinese medicine”... historically, acupuncture being only one modality among many, each having their appropriate time and place, but none more significant than the other.

    Likewise, “acupuncture institutions” does not well convey the great potential of this medicine nor the wisdom preserved within its colleges.
    Our growing presence and loud voices within any community or political endeavor should educate clearly: this great and proven medical discipline is well equipped for managing a plethora of disease and disorders arising within life.  We are more than needle technicians serving standardized “point prescriptions” (as doing so would only demonstrate an antithesis of “Chinese medicine”)... we are doctors, and skillful!!

      0 likes
  • November 18 2009 at 6:47 PM
    acuguy writes:

    Don’t forget the USDE

    I highly recomend the CAN Board also go directly to the USDE to make clear there is nothing close to broad consensus within the A/OM community.

     

    Matthew Bauer

      0 likes
  • November 18 2009 at 11:48 PM
    Guest writes:

    I had antithesis once…

    It hurt like hell.  I don’t want to speak for anyone else, but actually, I pretty much am a needle technician, doing the same standardized point prescriptions, over and over and over.  In fact, I really don’t believe in Qi or much meridian theory either.  Who knew apostasy could feel so good?  They keep wisdom preserved in the colleges?  I always wondered what that funky stuff in the glass jars in the herb dispensary were.  Huh!

      0 likes
  • November 19 2009 at 12:27 AM
    Nora writes:

    I had apostasy once…

    ...and that’s all it took.  I was hooked for life.  ;^)

      0 likes
  • November 19 2009 at 3:43 AM
    Guest writes:

    Sounds delicious! =P

    Sounds delicious! =P

      0 likes
  • December 7 2009 at 8:47 PM
    Guest writes:

    we are set up to be needle technicians

    The current AOM (Acupuncture and “Oriental” Medicine) education system and the national/state board exam content set us up to be mere “needle technicians.”  What we do after graduating and passing the exams (continuing education, self-study, practice) determines whether or not we transition to “Doctor.”

      0 likes

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