What Is Community Acupuncture? Is It Effective?
There’s a new method in town that is suppose to save you time and money while giving you a great acupuncture treatment but does it really? To find out we started asking people who have tried it what they thought about community acupuncture.
What is this type of treatment?
It’s simply group acupuncture. Up to six people at a time lay down on treatment tables together and receive acupuncture. There is no privacy, there is no calm relaxing experience but you do save money. The big bonus is the price for the visit is cheaper because of this.
What is the usual cost of community treatment?
Most patients who tried it remarked they were told they were paying about 30% less than regular or standard acupuncture which costs about 75.00 to 100.00 per treatment. Because insurance isn’t involved the centers don’t have to do paperwork which saves money. This also means that they do not have to follow HIPPA privacy laws about your medical records and that can be good and bad. If you are trying to save money something has to go in this case it’s paperwork and privacy. The upside is the lower cost.
How long do visits last?
Each visit with this style of treatment is done in a group setting where the practitioner moves from patient to patient putting in the acupuncture needles. If there are six patients at once, when the last person has their needles in, it’s time to take out the first person’s needles. Because you come in and lay down on any open table when you arrive, clean up time isn’t necessary. Some offices do have a second person who does wipe down the tables but sheets are optional in this method so you often will be laying either directly on the table or on a sheet that is used for all the patients of the day. Another way that people reported their treatment session worked was the practitioner put in the needles while an assistant followed behind them taking the needles out, and wiping off the table for the next person. So the time saved is huge. You as the patient will be in and out in less than 30 minutes in most cases instead of a full acupuncture visit with massage which takes at least one hour or more.
How many visits will I need with Community Acupuncture?
There is never a way to set a number of health care visits necessary for any kind of treatment. Let’s look at other therapy. If you see a PT you may start with a series of 6 visits but end up doing 10 or perhaps only 4. Another example is chemotherapy. The series may be only 3 visits then some testing to see if you need 3 more visits. Or your doctor may schedule you for the entire 6 visits right form the get go.
Any type of acupuncture treatment is the same. The number of visits needed to get you to either a maintenance or dismissal place is unknown due to other factors. With the group approach because you are limited on locations for needles to go, because you can not really relax, and because you don’t have the privacy needed for the healing work of energetic medicine or Qi; you will need usually double the visits to get the same effects that complete acupuncture treatment will provide.
In looking at reviews we found these two factors to be why you want to try it. If you lack funds and want a quick fix with acupuncture it is great for acute pain. The time and money spend are well worth it.
If you are looking for a true Oriental medicine and acupuncture relationship then it may not be right for you. If you need more than a couple of visits or your problem has lasted more than a few days this type of care may not address your issue. If you want stress relief, treatment for emotional concerns, or have health problems that are hard to discuss in a group treatment room community treatment is not for you.
In the long run if you are needing continued care or maintenance for chronic pain then the higher cost of complete acupuncture will be far less in the long run since fewer visits will be needed. Community acupuncture is more costly both in dollars for the longer more health conscious person who wants to get well and stay well.