18 VAC 85-110-10 et seq.
Regulations Governing Licensed Acupuncturists
in the Commonwealth of Virginia
Title of Regulation: 18 VAC 85-110-10 et seq. (VR 465-11-01) Licensed Acupuncturists
Statutory Authority: § 54.1-2400 and Chapter 29 (§ 54.1-2900 et.seq.) of Title 54.1 of the Code of Virginia
Effective Date: August 2, 2000
Summary: These regulations protect the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of the Commonwealth by establishing requirements and fees for licensure, renewal of license, reinstatement of a lapsed license, and for foreign educated graduates practicing as licensed acupuncturists.
18 VAC 85-110-10. Definitions.
A. The following words and terms, when used in this chapter, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in § 54.1-2900 of the Code of Virginia.
Practice of acupuncture
B. The following words and terms, when used in this chapter, shall have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"ACAOM" means the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. ACAOM replaces the National Accreditation Commission for Schools and Colleges of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
"CCAOM" means the Council of Colleges of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, and replaces the "NCASC" designation for the National Council of Acupuncture Schools and Colleges.
"CNT course" means a Clean Needle Technique Course as administered by the CCAOM.
"NCCAOM" means the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. NCCAOM replaces the National Commission for the Certification of Acupuncturists.
18 VAC 85-110-20. Public participation.
A separate board regulation, 18 VAC 85-10-10 et seq., provides for involvement of the public in the development of all regulations of the Virginia Board of Medicine.
18 VAC 85-110-30. Nonrestriction of doctors of medicine, osteopathy, chiropractic and podiatry.
Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to prohibit or restrict the practice of doctors of medicine, osteopathy, chiropractic or podiatry who are qualified by regulation to practice acupuncture.
18 VAC 85-110-35. Fees.
Unless otherwise provided, the following fees shall not be refundable:
1. The application fee for a license to practice as an acupuncturist shall be $130.
2. The fee for biennial active license renewal shall be $135; the fee for biennial inactive license renewal shall be $70.
3. The additional fee for processing a late renewal within one renewal cycle shall be $50.
4. The fee for reinstatement of a license which has expired for two or more years shall be $180.
5. The fee for a letter of good standing/verification of a license to another jurisdiction shall be $10.
6. The fee for reinstatement of a license pursuant to § 54.1-2921 of the Code of Virginia shall be $2,000.
7. The fee for a duplicate wall certificate shall be $15.
8. The fee for a duplicate renewal license shall be $5.
9. The fee for a returned check shall be $25.
Requirements for Licensure.
18 VAC 85-110-40. (Repealed.)
18 VAC 85-110-50. Educational requirements: graduates of approved institutions or programs in the United States.
A. Requirements for acupuncture education obtained prior to July 1, 1990 shall be as provided in this subsection.
1. An applicant applying for licensure to practice as an acupuncturist on the basis of successful completion of education in a school or college of acupuncture accredited by the ACAOM or other accrediting agencies approved by the Board of Medicine, which confers a degree or certificate in acupuncture in the United States, shall submit evidence of successful completion of an acupuncture course of study in an accredited school or college for acupuncture, providing evidence of not less than 1,000 hours of schooling in not less than a continuous 18-month period.
2. The studies shall include not less than 700 didactic hours and not less than 250 clinical hours. Additional hours may be in either didactic or clinical hours based upon the school or college curriculum.
B. Requirements for acupuncture education obtained after July 1, 1990 shall be as provided in this subsection.
An applicant applying for licensure to practice as a licensed acupuncturist on the basis of successful completion of education in a school or college for acupuncture accredited by ACAOM or any other accrediting agency approved by the Board of Medicine, which confers a degree or certificate in acupuncture in the United States, shall submit evidence of having a minimum of three academic years in length equivalent to 90 semester credit hours or 135 quarter credit hours.
One academic year means full-time study completed in three quarters, two semesters, or three trimesters. A full-time continuous study program shall be a concentrated educational process in acupuncture which requires individual study with assigned materials in a classroom or clinical setting.
18 VAC 85-110-60. Requirements of graduates of nonapproved educational programs in acupuncture.
A. An applicant who has completed an educational course of study in a school or college that is not approved or accredited by ACAOM or any other board approved accrediting agency shall:
1. Submit evidence of successful completion of not less than two years of acupuncture study.
2. Have not less than four years of practice in the previous seven years as a licensed acupuncturist in another jurisdiction without evidence of disciplinary action.
3. Meet the examination requirements as prescribed in 18 VAC 85-110-80 and 18 VAC 85-110-90.
B. All documents submitted to the board which are not in English must be translated into English and certified by the embassy of the issuing government;
18 VAC 85-110-70. Part-time study.
Part-time study of more than five years or correspondence courses in acupuncture are excluded and do not meet the requirements for acupuncture study.
18 VAC 85-110-80. Examination requirements for licensure.
The examination requirements for licensure shall consist of:
1. Passing the NCCAOM comprehensive written examination, resulting in certification by the NCCAOM;
2. Passing the Practical Examination of Point Location Skills (PEPLS) test; and
3. Completing the CNT course as administered by the CCAOM.
18 VAC 85-110-90. Test of spoken English requirements.
A. An applicant applying for licensure to practice as an acupuncturist whose native language is not English and whose acupuncture education was also not in English shall submit evidence of having achieved a passing score as acceptable to the board on either the Test of Spoken English (TSE) or the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) administered by the Educational Testing Services.
B. An applicant applying for licensure to practice as an acupuncturist whose native language is not English and whose acupuncture education was also not in English shall be exempt from the requirement for TSE or TOEFL, if the majority of his clients speak the language of the acupuncturist.
Scope of Practice.
18 VAC 85-110-100. General requirements.
Prior to performing acupuncture, a licensed acupuncturist shall obtain written documentation that the patient has received a diagnostic examination within the past six months by a licensed doctor of medicine, osteopathy, chiropractic, or podiatry acting within the scope of his practice or shall provide to the patient a written recommendation for such a diagnostic examination.
18 VAC 85-110-110. Limitation of titles.
A person practicing as a licensed acupuncturist is restricted to the use of the titles "Lic.Ac." or L.Ac." and shall not use the terms "physician" or "doctor" in his name or practice unless he simultaneously uses a clarifying title, initials, abbreviation or designation or language.
18 VAC 85-110-120. (Repealed.)
18 VAC 85-110-130. Maintenance of patient records.
A licensed acupuncturist shall maintain records of his diagnosis and treatment, and the patient's response to acupuncture and shall submit records to the board upon request, unless release of subject records is otherwise prohibited by law. Failure to maintain patient records of those patients treated with acupuncture or failure to respond to the board's request for patient records within 30 days shall be grounds for suspension or revocation of a license to practice acupuncture.
18 VAC 85-110-140. Sterilization practices and infection control.
Acupuncture needles shall be presterilized, prewrapped, disposable needles for the prevention of infection, to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the patient. Such needles shall be discarded after each patient treatment.
Renewal and Reinstatement of Licensure.
18 VAC 85-110-150. Biennial renewal of certification.
A. A licensed acupuncturist shall renew his certification biennially during his birth month in each odd-numbered year by:
1. Paying to the board the renewal fee as prescribed in subdivision 2 of VAC 85-110-35; and
2. Providing proof of recertification by the NCCAOM. If the licensee was not originally NCCAOM certified, his license may be renewed by providing evidence of continuing competency which is substantially equivalent to requirements for NCCAOM recertification and which is satisfactory to the board.
B. A licensed acupuncturist whose license has not been renewed by the first day of the month following the month in which renewal is required shall be dropped from the registration roll.
C. An additional fee to cover administrative costs for processing a late application shall be imposed by the board as prescribed by subdivision 3 of 18 VAC 85-110-35.
18 VAC 85-110-160. Reinstatement.
A. A licensed acupuncturist who allows his license to lapse for a period of two years or more and chooses to resume his practice shall submit to the board a new application, proof of recertification by the NCCAOM or if not originally NCCAOM certified, other evidence of continuing competency satisfactory to the board, and the fee for reinstatement of his license as prescribed in subdivision 4 of 18 VAC 85-110-35.
B. A licensed acupuncturist whose license has been revoked by the board and who wishes to be reinstated must make a new application to the board, be certified or recertified by the NCCAOM, and pay the fee for reinstatement of his license as prescribed in subdivision 6 of 18 VAC 85-100-35.
18 VAC 85-110-170. (Repealed.)
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