ASM works to protect the acupuncture scope of practice by monitoring legislation and regulations that impact the practice of acupuncture. We appreciate any support and assistance you can provide.
Senate 604, An Act relative to removing barriers to non-opioid pain management
Senator Keenan’s bill, S604 is a robust bill: An Act relative to removing barriers to non-opioid pain management. You can find the text here: https://malegislature.gov/Bills/191/S604.pdf
While this bill is not just an acupuncture bill, it’s language reflecting that all commercial insurance companies need to write policies that include THREE non-pharmacological treatments for pain covered. This is a way for us to ask that acupuncture specifically be included and that this become law.
Once again, bills have been introduced to bring acupuncture and East Asian Medicine into the Massachusetts’ public health sphere and to mandate insurance coverage for pain management, post-traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse treatment, and nausea. Because of acupuncture’s increased visibility in the State House and the opioid crisis, we think there is a great chance of passing the bills this session.
This session, the ASM would like to have as many acupuncturists and patients involved in the process of passing these bills, including, but not limited to:
High levels of participation not only increase the chances of the bills passing, but also the visibility of acupuncture in our communities. Our patients need to be involved!
Dan Delaney, the ASM lobbyist, has met with the staff of both the Senate and House chairs of the Public Health Committee and the Senate staff of the Financial Services Committee. He is very hopeful about the Senate Financial Services approach to our insurance bill and thinks we'll have luck moving it out of committee. We are happy to have Senator Jen Flanagan of the Worcester area promoting the bill (S260) in the Senate, and Representative Smitty Pignatelli, our champion in the House (H1119).
A new bill and a new strategy was introduced by Representatives Smitty Pignatelli and John Keenan.
House 565 - An Act relative to opioid prescribing practices and access to pain management.
This bill does several things, with the intent of getting patients increased access to non-pharmaceutical pain management. It's not a mandated benefit bill, but it changes some of the accreditation criteria to encourage insurers to cover non-pharmaceutical pain management.
In other words, insurance companies would have to cover proven non-pharmaceutical interventions for pain, making this a kind of essential health benefit in Massachusetts.
On Monday, May 15, 2017 from 11am-1pm we will once more introduce our legislators to acupuncture (giving sample ear treatments), our profession, our education, our importance to the public health of Massachusetts and the bills we are introducing to the legislature this session.
Acupuncture Day on the Hill last October was very successful and well received. Acupuncturists and vendors met with legislators before and after the event
Anyone, especially those in the Boston area, who would like to participate in this event should register here on the website so that we may keep you informed of any last minute updates.
For more information or to become more involved contact committee chair: Naomi Alson (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Let your patients know about this important and fun event.
Together we can get acupuncture, a safe and evidence-based medicine to you, your family, friends and patients in the Massachusetts Commonwealth!
Find your state representative and senator on this site: It will provide the names and contact info for your Senator and Representative.