WAEMA is the acupuncture profession's primary voice in representing and promoting acupuncture and East Asian medicine in Washington state. WAEMA was created for practitioners, the general public, students and allied professionals and legislators.

important news

Watch our Public Policy Director Leslie Emerick and WAEMA member Sue Schultz at a hearing for companion bills SB 6038 and HB 2203.

Watch their testimony in the Senate (starts at 1:24:12)

Watch their testimony in the House (starts at 17:41)

New COVID-19 forum posts

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  • March 26, 2020 10:16 AM | Anonymous

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    Commerce Logo


    News Release


    MARCH 26, 2020

    Commerce announces $1.8 million to rural counties for COVID-19 pandemic response

    Food, rental assistance, small business support, health services among eligible uses of funding to 17 rural Washington counties


    OLYMPIA, WA --- Washington State Department of Commerce Director Lisa Brown today announced $1.8 million in additional state Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) to rural counties to assist people and businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Awarded through the Economic Opportunity Grant program, these funds can be used at the discretion of county authorities to meet a variety of emerging local needs, such as providing food and rental assistance, small business support and health services. Counties provide for these and other urgent needs through partnerships with local service providers. 

    Funding to the following counties is estimated, pending approval of state and local distribution plans.



    Service Area

    Grant amount



    $ 46,397


    Benton, Franklin

    $ 79,061


    Chelan, Douglas

    $ 71,990


    Cowlitz, Wahkiakum

    $ 83,951


    Grant, Adams


    Grays Harbor

    Grays Harbor, Pacific



    Jefferson, Clallam






    Klickitat, Skamania

    $ 83,819


    Mason, Lewis







    $  77,155


    Stevens, Ferry, Lincoln, Pend Oreille


    Walla Walla

    Walla Walla, Columbia, Garfield

    $ 53,821











    The state CDBG program receives an annual funding allocation from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to assist rural communities to meet local priority needs. Since 1982, the state CDBG program has awarded over $525 million in grants to over 1,500 locally prioritized community development projects. Larger cities and counties receive CDBG funding directly from HUD, and are not a part of the state CDBG program.


    For detailed information about CDBG, please visit http://www.commerce.wa.gov/cdbg. Contact Kaaren Roe, CDBG Section Manager, at (360) 725-3018 for assistance.


    Barbara Dunn

    Commerce Communications, 360-725-2805


    Stay connected


    About Commerce

    Commerce works with local governments, businesses, community-based organizations and tribes to strengthen communities. The department’s diverse portfolio of more than 100 programs and effective public and private partnerships promote sustainable community and economic development to help all Washingtonians thrive. For more information, visit http://www.commerce.wa.gov. For information on locating or expanding a business in Washington, visit choosewashingtonstate.com.

    Update your subscriptions, modify your password or email address, or stop subscriptions at any time on your Subscriber Preferences Page. You will need to use your email address to log in. If you have questions or problems with the subscription service, please visit subscriberhelp.govdelivery.com.

    This service is provided to you at no charge by Washington Department of Commerce.

    Subscribe | Manage Preferences | Unsubscribe All | Help | Contact us

    Learn more about what you can do to promote participation in the 2020 Census where you live.


  • March 25, 2020 11:58 AM | Anonymous

    Greeting colleagues,
    These are unprecedented times and we understand that many of you are grappling with the difficult decisions around how to best serve your patients.
    To stay open or not
    Acupuncturists (as "alternative healthcare providers") are listed in the essential workforce by Governor Inslee. This means that acupuncturists in Washington state are allowed to continue to practice, if the treatment is essential.

    If you do see patients it is advised to follow the CDC guidelines for healthcare practitioners.

    All types of healthcare providers including dentists, medical doctors, and surgeons have stopped non-essential treatments. The primary goal is to decrease the surge in in hospitals and lower the rate of transmission to lower the burden on the healthcare system.

    This is not business as usual; you should only see patients that would otherwise end up in the hospital, do not treat if the service you are providing can wait.

    Here are some resources on how to safely practice if you choose to see patients:

    Financial impact
    A big concern is the financial impact to all of our practices. There is not a clear solution to this at the moment and a lot of efforts are in motion to help. Here are some resources:

    We are healthcare practitioners and we want to be of service
    As acupuncturists we feel the need to assist our communities, especially in these times when so many can benefit from the medicine we offer.

    We will shine with the recovery phase, patients will need our care more than ever.

    We are all in this together!
    Please continue to share your thoughts on the WAEMA Facebook group and check out our COVID-19 resource page for information for links to credible sources and information you can share.
    Thank you,
    WAEMA Board

  • January 17, 2020 11:16 AM | Anonymous

    Join WAEMA for a special Chinese New Year celebration with a traditional menu honoring the Year of the Metal Rat. Enjoy the camaraderie and presentations on insurance updates, Chinese astrology predictions, exclusive benefits of WAEMA, and the power of our PAC.

    This event is open to all friends of acupuncture so bring your spouses and friends who love and support our profession!


    Saturday, January 25, 2020
    4:00 – 7:00PM

    Aegis Gardens
    13056 SE 76th St
    Newcastle, WA 98056

    $30 per person

    Register yourself and any guests before Friday, January 17th online or by emailing info@weama.info.

    Get Your Ticket Today

  • October 11, 2019 10:28 AM | Anonymous

    Dear WAEMA Members;

    During the 2019 legislative session WAEMA was the proponent of a bill that passed the state legislature, SHB 1865 Regulating the practice of acupuncture and Eastern medicine. The bill was amended in the House Health Care Committee by Representative Cody who sent a portion of the bill that dealt with scope expansion and clarification to a Sunrise Review at DOH. This is where a profession’s scope expansion is reviewed by the department for public safety and other criteria.

    WAEMA has been working diligently over the summer on the Acupuncture Sunrise Review, submitting the initial Proposal to Increase Scope of Practice for Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine by the end of June. The public hearing for the Sunrise Review was on Friday, August 2, 2019 and we had the opportunity to provide additional follow-up until August 9th to address some of the issues that came up at the public hearing.

    The draft Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine Scope of Practice Sunrise Review is now available for rebuttal comments. You can also access the report on the DOH Sunrise Review Web Page.

    WAEMA believes that the report is positive for the Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine profession. It recommends that WAEMA work with stakeholders regarding their concerns and we have been successfully doing that since the public hearing to gain their support! Here are the department’s recommendations.

    The department recommends expanding the scope of practice to add local anesthetics, oxygen, and epinephrine for use in point injection therapy. These are appropriate additions to the acupuncture scope of practice and the applicant group established a need for these substances to increase patient safety by preventing adverse reactions.

    The department recommends WAEMA, Washington Association of Naturopathic Physicians (WANP), Washington State Medical Association (WSMA), the Washington Orthopedic Association, and other appropriate organizations work together to propose alternate language to ensure the amended definition of acupuncture and Eastern medicine in the draft bill remains a clarification, rather than an increase in the scope or practice.

    The department is not making recommendations regarding the remainder of the changes in the draft bill because they are outside the scope of a sunrise review. The purpose of the sunrise criteria is to establish guidelines for unregulated health professions or “those licensed or regulated health professions which seek to substantially increase their scope of practice.” The remainder of the changes in the bill are clarifications, not expansions of the scope of practice.

    This is your opportunity to provide support for the draft recommendations before DOH finalizes the report for the legislature. Please send a comment supporting the draft report to DOH!

    Comments are due October 16, 2019 at 5:00 p.m. You may email your comments to sunrise@doh.wa.gov, attention: Sherry Thomas, Policy Coordinator.

    The final draft of the Acupuncture Sunrise Review report will be used as the basis for running a bill in the 2020 legislative session which begins January 14, 2020. A draft of the bill will be coming soon as we finalize stakeholder work on the final details of the bill language!

    Thank you!

    Leslie Emerick
    WAEMA Lobbyist

  • July 18, 2019 9:56 AM | Anonymous


    Sunrise Review comment period is AUGUST 2nd 9am-11am.


    Notice of Public Comment Period and Public Hearing Sunrise Review - Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine Scope of Practice

    Public Hearing: August 2, 2019 from 9:00 – 11:00 AM

    Please sign in by 9:30 to testify Department of Health.

    Special testimony from selected speakers will take up the first 30min. After that you will have an opportunity to give a testimony. Specific testimony should reflect personal practice impact of the scope clarification or the scope update.

    Testimony examples are: if you do point injection therapy, work in a methadone clinic, practice auricular therapy, practice Japanese acupuncture, practice trigger point/intramuscular/dry needling. The message would be ~ answer the question "why are you in support of these practices?"

    Written Comments:
    Your welcome to submit a written comment if you are not able to attend!
    Written comments are invited on the proposal until July 29, 2019 at 5:00 PM.

    LOCATION for testimony to DOH:
    310 Israel Road SE, Room 152/153
    Tumwater, Washington 98512

    There will be additional opportunities for comments following the public hearing and after we release draft recommendations.

    All the information regarding the sunrise review can be found at this URL: https://www.doh.wa.gov/AboutUs/ProgramsandServices/HealthSystemsQualityAssurance/SunriseReviews/SunriseReviewinProgress

  • June 12, 2019 3:43 PM | Anonymous

    Greetings Esteemed Colleagues!

    Member feedback is needed! We have received only a few responses and we need more input to make sure we are headed in the right direction and your input is heard. Your feedback is invaluable!

    Please take time to fill out our short survey. It should only take a few minutes. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/PWLKF3G


    Spring membership meeting was a success!
    Did you miss the Spring Membership Meeting but are interested in what was presented?
    You can purchase all the insurance information and editable handouts at the following link: https://weama.info/Sys/Store/Products/17022

    Cost: Member: $15, non-member: $50.

    Items included are:

    Marketing PowerPoint presentation by Tyler Martin
    Insurance PowerPoint Presentation and documents:
    Common ICD10 codes
    Financial policy
    4 easy steps to submitting claims to the VA
    Exam checklist
    Super bill
    Expanded intake

    We hope you find this information useful and helpful in building a successful practice.

    Thank you for taking the time to fill out the WAEMA survey! https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/PWLKF3G

    Warm regards from your WAEMA board!

  • May 30, 2019 3:31 PM | Anonymous

    Marketing and Insurance presentation and documents
    Legislative Report
    Fish and Wildlife presentation
    Bylaws Report
    WAEMA Survey
    Please take a few minutes to share your thoughts, ideas and desires for what you want WAEMA board to focus on during this upcoming year.

    A Happy Spring greeting to all;

    Here is an overview of topics that were covered at the spring meeting along with links to resources for those of you that didn’t make it or perhaps wanted to review.

    We started off the day with presentations of the local and national updates for the profession. Our bill HB1865 passed with flying colors and was signed into law by the Governor. The bill changed the professional name to Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine Practitioners (AEMP) as an umbrella term to include all aspects of our profession while being non-derogatory for all of our colleagues. People who prefer to go by LAc and/or EAMP are able to do so should they desire. The bill also is giving us CEU requirements which will be determined by the East Asian Medicine Advisory committee, which will now be called the Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine Advisory committee. (To obtain paying jobs in a hospital type setting, including the VA, we need to have CEU requirements.)

    The other aspects of our bill that were removed got approved for a Sunrise review process, which we are entering into now. If you wish to be involved, please contact WAEMA as soon as possible.

    Our Legislation Day on the “Hill” (in Olympia), was a huge success and generated a lot of good will. We plan on doing another one next year and would love for you to join us! The board has approved CEU based on the length of time that put towards legislation. Please get in touch with us if you would like CEU’s for your contribution!

    Hopefully all of you who are members got the email about the great new benefit we are being offered through the ASA (American Society of Acupuncturists; our national association)! The Meridians Journal, now the JASA journal is being offered to us for only $2 an issue instead of $50 an issue!

    Our national conference and legislation day is coming up at the end of the month; May 31st through June 3rd. (http://www.asacu.org) I am currently the only person going from WA state - if anyone wants to attend it isn’t too late! Please let me know, I would love to have some company. Upon returning I will report back on the exciting things that are coming up for us with legislation around the VA and Medicare as well as an update on a membership drive for 50% +1 members so the ASA can represent our profession with the AMA (American Medical Association) at the table to discuss CPT codes.

    We then had an amazing talk from two practitioners that are currently working within the healthcare system; Carly Samish who works in Hospice Care and Liz Artola who works at Seattle Children’s hospital. They both shared inspiring stories of how they got their positions as well as the learning curve they experienced while adapting to the healthcare system setting. The talk offered windows of insight into one of the avenues that we are branching into.

    A couple of months ago the board began to hear about Fish and Wildlife conducting searches into the offices of our colleagues looking through herbal products in search of animal products from animals on the endangered species list. Since then the board has reached out in order to work better with Fish and Wildlife to protect these animals while ensuring that their procedures are respectful of our practices and clients, and are also fully understood by our membership. To learn more, please see their presentation on our website.

    After lunch we went on to have two more very informative presentations from Tyler Martin and John Frostad. Tyler owns and runs a successful clinic in Ballard and came to speak with us about building your brand in a way that holds true to who you are as well as building trust with your patients so they become your greatest marketing investment. John Frostad then came and discussed the intricacies of billing as well as an update on the work going on to make sure we get paid for the services we are providing. Charis Wolf (myself) also handed out documents on common billing codes used, CPT codes we can bill for and intake forms to bill for a 99203 when the patient qualifies. Please see the link above for this information if you missed the meeting!

    We are offering these documents to members for a small fee of $15 and to non- members for $50. Please respect the work that has been put into this by your peers and their years of experience, and don’t share for free. Remember all this comes back to all of you through the efforts of an entirely volunteer board that is working hard for you!

    The board then went on to vote Carly Samish, a new member onto the board as well as renewing another term as a board member for Dr Jianfeng Yang and Dr Catherine Dayhoff (DAOM).

    The next vote was to change the name of the association to align with the new bill language to Washington Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine association, which passed as well.

    The last hour of the board meeting went into presenting the new bylaws worked on by the bylaws committee over the last 4 months which also passed. While the new bylaws were passed, further revisions were presented to the membership that warrant more consideration. It was decided that the bylaws committee will continue and we will keep refining with further input from our colleagues.


    WAEMA Survey
    Please take a few minutes to share your thoughts, ideas and desires for what you want WAEMA board to focus on during this upcoming year.

  • May 10, 2019 2:40 PM | Anonymous

    Hello fellow acupuncturist colleagues who have participated in:

    • The WA State L&I Acupuncture Pilot as providers these past couple years
    • Or, didn’t get in on the 2-week registration crush in August 2017 but still participated in the L&I Pilot learning resources

    I have a time-sensitive request:
    Would you complete this survey this week? https://forms.gle/C6YFQQ8ckMxiGN2a9

    What this is:
    I worked with Lisa Taylor-Swanson, PhD, LAc, to create this survey for the acupuncturists who participated in the WA state L&I Acupuncture Pilot. Lisa will be doing a poster presentation on the Workers’ Comp Pilot at the late June 2019 Society of Acupuncture Research (SAR) conference. The goal is to have the data finished in the next couple weeks so she can have the numbers crunched and useful for her poster or verbal presentation information.

    I drafted this as a post-course survey to help me learn what, of the resources I created, was most useful to those who engaged with them. Then, Lisa made the survey better and relevant to the Pilot as a whole. The survey collects some basic demographics and then dives into: what resources you used and had access to, what you found most helpful, and room to share your experiences of the Pilot.

    What I will do with the survey results
    I’ll share the de-identified (removed names and email addresses) with Lisa, the WEAMA board, and Zach Gray (the WA State L&I Acupuncture Pilot Lead), when the results/data are finished.

    How you can help

    1. Fill out the survey yourself about your experience this week.

    2. Please share this survey link with other colleagues who participated in the L&I Acupuncture Pilot and/or the Pilot education resources: https://forms.gle/C6YFQQ8ckMxiGN2a9

    Due date: ideally, this week. However, no later than May 20th, 2019.

    I think the survey takes about 15 minutes to fill out. However, when you get a chance at it, please let me know a better time estimation. You can email me at megankgale@outlook.com

    Thank you for participating in the pilot and being an important part of the work to change workers’ comp policy in WA state!!

    I am looking forward to learning from your feedback!

    Thank you for filling out this time-sensitive survey.

    ~Megan Kingsley Gale, MSAOM, EAMP/LAc, LMT

    Creator of the extra resources for LAc s in the WA state L&I Acupuncture Pilot (10.2017 WEAMA L&I workshop at Bastyr University, Tuesday Trainings, Workers’ Comp Toolkit: A Practitioner perspective)

    You can still access all these resources for no cost (with the WEAMA coupon code) at https://hospital-practice-basics.teachable.com/p/lni-acupuncture-pilot-project-wa-state-documentation-training

  • April 23, 2019 12:53 PM | Anonymous

    Hello all practitioners and students!

    We have put together a membership meeting just for you! This meeting will focus on how to GROW and love your practice.

    • Speakers sharing their strategies on:
      • Marketing and getting more patients
      • Branding; what makes your practice special
      • Jobs in the healthcare system
      • Navigating the start of your practice as well as developing your practice
    • Handouts on how to bill and we will discuss insurance information to help everyone understand how to successfully take and collect insurance
    • Speaker from Fish and Wildlife to cover the endangered species laws for WA state
    • Scope expansion discussion and the Sunrise review coming this summer

    Your presence at the upcoming WEAMA Spring Membership Meeting is valuable! If you have not already registered, please know we have a special low rate to offer this valuable information to all and the student registration remains at a discounted rate of $30. We hope to see you there.

    Continuing Education Credits
    WEAMA has been approved to offer 5 CE credits for our Spring Membership Meeting program.We are always striving to not only offer you education you can use to grow yourself and your business, but also ways for you to maximize the number of continuing education credits you receive.

    Review Our New Program Guide

    Register Today!

  • April 12, 2019 4:14 PM | Anonymous

    WEAMA Legislative Alert!

    Please call your state Senator and ask for a yes vote on SHB 1865 Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine!

    WEAMA’s bill, SHB 1865 Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine (Sponsor: Rep Eileen Cody) is near the finish line! The bill has passed the House of Representatives (96 yeas, 2 nays), passed the Senate Health Care Committee unanimously, passed out of the Rules Committee and is on the Consent Calendar waiting to be pulled to the floor of the Senate for a final vote. Once the bill passes the Senate it will go to the Governor for signature into state law. The bill:

    • Changes the name of the profession from "East Asian medicine" and "East Asian medicine practitioner" to "acupuncture and Eastern medicine" and "acupuncturist (or acupuncture) and Eastern medicine practitioner."
    • Directs the Department of Health to adopt a rule requiring completion of continuing education for acupuncturists.
    • Repeals laws related to the approval of applications and requiring an examination fee for East Asian medicine practitioners and application of the East Asian medicine chapter to previously registered acupuncture assistants.

    We need our profession to call their State Senators! If you are not sure who your State Senator is, please enter your home address at: https://app.leg.wa.gov/DistrictFinder/

    Here is a sample message for your Senator:

    Dear Senator ________,

    Thank you for all your hard work this legislative session! I am a licensed acupuncturist (East Asian Medicine Practitioner) in your home district and am asking for your support for SHB 1865 Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine, which is on the Consent Calendar and waiting for a vote on the floor of the Senate.

    The bill changes the name of the profession by eliminating the term “East Asian” to “Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine” which recognizes the common use of the term acupuncture and assures that the broader system of medicine is acknowledged.

    This bill is very important to our profession to align with federal efforts to include acupuncture in Medicare and to combat opioid addiction by offering acupuncture as an alternative to opioids. It also addresses concerns from members of the acupuncture community regarding the term “East Asian” which some consider offensive.

    The bill also provides authority for the Department of Health to establish Continuing Education requirements in rule and changes the name of the “East Asian Medicine Advisory Committee” to the “Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine Advisory Committee”.

    I would appreciate your support in getting this important bill, SHB 1865 Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine pulled to the floor of the Senate for final passage! Thank you.


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PT dry needling Sunrise Review Draft Report

WA DOH:  "The department does not support the applicant’s proposal to add dry needling to the physical therapy scope of practice. The proposal as submitted does not meet the sunrise criteria for increasing a profession’s scope of practice."  Download DOH Draft Report

WA State Attorney General's Opinion

The WA State Attorney General has issued his opinion stating that dry needling is not within the PT's scope of practice. Read the full opinion

Point Injection Clarification
SHB 2448 Bill Signed

Governor Jay Inslee signed our bill, SHB 2448, which helped clarify over 30 years of ambiguity. Read the Senate Bill Report

Meridians Journal Issues Available

Members can access the latest issue of Meridians Journal.  Login to your account above first.Member Benefits section

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The Washington East Asian Medicine Association  is a 501(c)(6) organization under federal tax guidelines.