About Acupuncture
Acupuncture is a branch of traditional medicine that has been practised in China and the far east for thousands of years. It has been developed, tested, researched and refined over this time into a treatment option accessed by increasing numbers of patients in the West. Without the benefit of modern scientific equipment, the first acupuncturists made many discoveries which are now familiar aspects of biomedical science.

A growing body of evidence-based clinical research is discovering how the body responds to acupuncture and its benefits for a wide range of common health conditions.  Many people use acupuncture to relieve specific aches and pains such as osteoarthritis of the knee, TMJ pain, headaches and lower back pain, or for common health problems like an overactive bladder.  Other people choose acupuncture when they can feel their bodily functions are out of balance but have no obvious western medical diagnosis that will easily lead to a western medical treatment.  Many also have regular treatments simply because they find it beneficial and relaxing.

The focus for a traditional acupuncturist is on the patient as an individual and not just their specific illness, and all symptoms are seen as part of an interconnected pattern. Treatment involves the insertion of very fine needles into specific points in the body.  The needles interact with your body’s physiology and help to bring about change.
    
What is the British Acupuncture Council?
The British Acupuncture Council (BAcC) is the leading self-regulatory body for the practice of traditional acupuncture in the UK. It is a member-led organisation, governed by an elected Governing Board and driven by a specialist staff team.
They provide members with a wide range of services to facilitate practice and ensure the highest standards. Their responsibilities include:
  • maintaining the highest professional standards of practice for acupuncture in the UK
  • overseeing and accrediting acupuncture education to ensure excellence in training
  • funding evidence-based clinical research on the benefits of traditional acupuncture

Members of the BAcC are bound by the Council’s stringent Standards of Practice and Codes of Ethics.

What is the Professional Standards Authority?
The Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care is a government body set up to oversee statutory bodies that hold voluntary registers of health and social care professionals, such as the British Acupuncture Council.

Acupuncture in the UK is not covered by statutory regulation, and as such it was felt that distinguishing between acupuncturists who had undertaken short courses, and those that had undertaken more extensive study, was of interest to members of the general public looking for high standards of care.  The BAcC was an early member of the Professional Standards Authority’s ‘Accredited Voluntary Register’ (AVR), which recognises the fact that they maintain high standards of training, safe practice and professional conduct among members.
You can read the BAcC’s entry on their register here if you would like to know more.