New Acupuncture Rule Effective on December 5th, 2018
Written by Editor   
Tuesday, November 20, 2018 03:05 PM

The Texas Board of Chiropractic Examiners adopted the new acupuncture rule with non-substantive changes at its November 8th meeting. The new rule and preamble were filed with the Texas Register on November 15. The rule will be published in the November 30th issue of the Texas Register. The new rule takes effect on December 5th, 2018.


(a) Acupuncture, and the related practices of acupressure and meridian therapy, includes methods for diagnosing and treating a patient by stimulating specific points on or within the musculoskeletal system by various means, including manipulation, heat, cold, pressure, vibration, laser, ultrasound, light electrocurrent, and the insertion of acupuncture needles or solid filiform needles for the purpose of obtaining a bio-positive reflex response by nerve stimulation.

(b) A licensee shall practice acupuncture only after obtaining a permit from the Texas Board of Chiropractic Examiners (Board).

(c) The Board shall place on each renewal license to practice chiropractic a statement that a licensee who has met all Board requirements is permitted to practice acupuncture. A licensee whose license does not contain the statement permitting the practice of acupuncture shall not practice or advertise the practice of acupuncture.

(d) A licensee with an acupuncture permit cannot delegate the performance of acupuncture.

(e) Requirements for an acupuncture permit:

(1) On or after the effective date of this rule, a licensee may receive an acupuncture permit from the Board by completing at least one hundred (100) hours of training in acupuncture and passing the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners' examination. The training must be provided by an accredited chiropractic college, or post-secondary university, or other educational or testing institution approved by the Board. Such training shall include didactic, clinical, and practical training in the practice of acupuncture, clean needle techniques, examination, and protocols that meet the blood-borne pathogen standard established by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

(2) A person who became a licensee after January 1, 2010, and before the effective date of this rule, who has been practicing acupuncture in compliance with previous Board rules, shall have until September 1, 2019, to obtain an acupuncture permit from the Board by passing the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners' standardized certification examination in acupuncture and completing 100 hours of acupuncture training.

(3) A person who became a licensee before January 1, 2010, shall have until September 1, 2019, to obtain an acupuncture permit from the Board by having:

(A) Successfully completed and passed an examination in a one hundred (100) hour training course in acupuncture; or

(B) Successfully completed and passed either the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners' standardized certification examination in acupuncture or the examination offered by the National Certification Commission of Acupuncture before the effective date of this rule; or

(C) Successfully completed formal training along with providing a statement to the Board of having practiced acupuncture in clinical practice for at least ten years before January 1, 2010, and is in good standing with the Board and the regulatory entities of the other jurisdictions in which the licensee is licensed. The Board may audit any statement for accuracy.

(4) Documentation of acupuncture training shall be in the form of signed certificates of attendance or completion, or diplomas from course sponsors or instructors.

(f) A licensee permitted to practice acupuncture must complete a minimum of eight (8) hours in Board-approved acupuncture courses every biennium.

(g) A licensee shall not practice acupuncture until the licensee has submitted proof of compliance with subsection (e) and has received a permit from the Board.

(h) A licensee practicing acupuncture shall not advertise in a manner that suggests the licensee possesses a license to practice acupuncture issued by the Texas State Board of Acupuncture Examiners, including using any of the terms "acupuncturist," "licensed acupuncturist," "L.Ac.," "Traditional Chinese Medicine," or "degreed in acupuncture."

(i) A licensee's advertising may include the terms "Board Certified" or "Board Certified in Chiropractic Acupuncture" if it also clearly identifies the nationally recognized certifying board and credentials.

(j) Approved programs in clinical acupuncture or meridian therapy offered by accredited chiropractic colleges or universities are designed for doctors of chiropractic and other disciplines. These courses are not intended as a substitute for a full curriculum teaching traditional Chinese medicine; rather they focus on the principle, theory, scientific findings, and practical modern application of acupuncture as currently practiced by doctors of chiropractic.

(k) The practice of acupuncture by a licensee who has not complied with the requirements of this section constitutes unprofessional conduct and subjects the licensee to disciplinary action. A licensee who advertises acupuncture without first obtaining a permit also has engaged in unprofessional conduct.