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Letters from Our New MAAOM President, Henry Buchtel and Vice President, Gigi Christache

05 Jun 2013 1:16 PM | MAAOM Staff (Administrator)

It is my honor to be elected as the president of the Michigan Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (MAAOM) for the 2013-15 term, and as a professional, registered acupuncturist in the state of Michigan, I’m excited to be leading our organization in its continued push for effective legislative representation!

From its humble beginnings in the US, acupuncture and oriental medicine has grown to become a full-fledged health care profession with accredited Masters and Doctoral degree programs, national certification standards, and active representation at both the national and state levels.

We in the Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AOM) field have a unique and valuable perspective on health and disease that finds its roots in the ancient natural sciences of East Asia. Practitioners of acupuncture and herbal medicine are able to provide patients with effective, economical, environmentally friendly, and reliable treatment options that are available from no other source.

As responsible members of the health care community, we all share the goal of ensuring that safe and effective acupuncture treatments are available to Michigan residents. It has been shown in the US that the best way of achieving this goal is through legislation that recognizes the education and certification standards of the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) or their equivalent; standards that are currently part of Michigan law. As members of the MAAOM and active professionals, I hope you will join us in our efforts to communicate with our government representatives, other medical professionals, and the general public, and lay the groundwork for full licensure of acupuncture in Michigan.

With your participation, we can look forward to having an even more vibrant community of active professionals, increased opportunities to bring inspirational leaders in our field to Michigan, and effective legislation that protects both patients and practitioners, allowing us to continue to bring our unique perspective on health to our communities!

Henry A. Buchtel
M.S. (China), Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM), R. Ac (MI)

Thank you all for electing me the Vice President of the Michigan Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (MAAOM). It is with great pleasure, enthusiasm, and deep humility that I look forward to continuing the great work of my predecessors and to adapt it to the new realities our wonderful profession is facing today.

I am a registered, practicing acupuncturist in Michigan and a nationally board certified acupuncturist. I studied at the Academy for Five Element Acupuncture and, after graduation, I moved from Florida to Michigan. I am also a doctoral candidate in acupuncture and oriental medicine at the Yo San University.

In Michigan, as we all know, acupuncture is at risk of deregulation. This will set our profession back in time and will reduce the standards of practice, putting at risk the quality and effectiveness of the acupuncture treatments. It will also cast a shadow on the Acupuncture profession, pushing it towards the fringes of our medical environment. Michigan deserves better!

The new president of MAAOM, Henry Buchtel, the secretary, Terry Matson, the newly appointed chair of Public Relations, Anne Biris, our treasurer, Julie Shindler-Cohen, and myself, are all committed to do everything in our power to prevent deregulation and to move our profession forward towards a legislative environment conducive to the safe and effective practice of Acupuncture, to include independent licensing of all qualified acupuncturists and the recognition of Acupuncture as a stand-alone, competent medical system.

In addition to making our opinion known to the legislative body, we will focus on promoting Acupuncture and its benefits to everyone in Michigan, to give all the people in Michigan one more viable option and healing modality.

To be successful, we need teamwork, we need everyone’s participation. I am extending an invitation to all acupuncturists to join our association and become a member. Let’s do this together! Let’s make it happen!

Gigi B Cristache
Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM), R. Ac. (MI), Di.Hom.

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