A Publication of the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
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Spring 2020
Bullet Message from the Board Chair
Bullet Message from the CEO
Bullet Advocacy Update
Bullet NCCAOM Board of Commissioners 2020 Update
Bullet NCCAOM to Unveil Continuing Education Reporting Automation
Bullet Chinese Herbal Compounding and Safety Certificate Course
Bullet NCCAOM Diplomate Spotlight: Shellie Rosen

Message from the Board Chair


By Iman Majd, MD, MS, EAMP/L.Ac., Dip. ABFM, ABoIM, Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM)®, DABMA, ABIHM, Certified GUNN-IMS

Dear Colleagues, 

I am honored to be selected as the Chair of the Board of the Commissioners of the NCCAOM, and I am looking forward to serving you all in this capacity. 

In the past several months we’ve witnessed an unprecedented health crisis emerge—an isolated cluster of respiratory viral infection has rapidly evolved into a global pandemic—and now here in the United States we are all being called to unite and rally in support of stemming the spread of Sars-Cov-2 (novel coronavirus) and help one another through these very difficult and challenging times.

Daily we are learning more about the virus and its brutal indiscrimination: it is highly contagious – CDC recently estimated that 25% of those with the virus are asymptomatic carriers and will remain so, and among other patients there’s risk of transmission in the 48 hours prior to exhibiting symptoms. As such, healthcare professions are at particular risk, so I implore all my colleagues to take the utmost precaution and follow all CDC and state guidelines, to protect your patients, yourself and our communities.

This pandemic is causing all of us anxiety, hardship and frustration—things are moving fast and at times it is hard to keep up with the pace of the impact of this pandemic on our daily activities. Most in our profession are small business owners so the consequences are being particularly hard felt. “Stay in” orders at state levels and the general deferment of non-urgent services are significantly affecting our practices. As a practitioner myself, I can say that most of us have very special relationships with our patients and we often provide essential health services. Some of us have been able to pivot to telehealth and provide non-acupuncture services but for most the situation is tough. All of us though are anxious and concerned for our safety, the safety of our families and our patients.  

At the heart of the NCCAOM’s mission is the safe delivery of care. Here we are not just considering the public. We are also considering the practitioner, you. As practitioners trained in a non-conventional medical discipline, we have a lot to offer to our patients beyond our in-office visits. Considering the gravity of this pandemic, and the shortage of Personal Protective Equipment, it might be nearly impossible for us to ensure a safe delivery of services in office. I encourage all of us, wherever possible, to engage with our patients through telehealth/telemedicine for the time being, defer non-urgent patient interactions and always use personal protective equipment to protect yourself and your patients. We have some tough months ahead, but this crisis will pass. 

In the meantime, let’s have each other’s back and show the solidarity that makes our profession unique. I ask you to reach out—make a call to your colleagues; check in on them and their families. Let them know we are all in this together, and that physical distancing cannot result in social distancing. As a profession we are unique, we are resilient, and we are valued. Our best days are ahead of us and I have the highest confidence that we will rebound stronger and better than we have ever been.  


In Peace,

Iman Majd MD, MS, EAMP/L.Ac., Dip. ABFM, ABoIM, Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM)®, DABMA, ABIHM, Certified GUNN-IMS

NCCAOM Board Chair

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Message from the CEO


By Mina Larson, CEO, M.S., MBA, CAE

During my first year as NCCAOM’s CEO, I would have never imagined that we would be faced with a global pandemic that has costs thousands of lives and disrupted the economy in such a manner that has impacted almost all of us. This is a time when leadership and collaboration is vital so that we can put our collective minds and resources together to navigate through these unchartered territories to move our profession forward. This is why during this challenging time, the NCCAOM Board of Commissioners and staff are working together with other organizations to provide resources to help our practitioners, students, and other stakeholders throughout the nation to maneuver the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic as safely as possible.  We have been working in partnership with the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) to provide weekly updates on issues related to COVID-19 through weekly and timely  joint on-line town hall meeting addressing issues such as summarizing the 900 page CARES Act to help with resources for small business loans and unemployment.  We encourage you to attend these online town hall meetings every week and if you miss it, we have recorded them. All questions that are submitted through our town hall meetings are answered and posted by the ASA and NCCAOM on our websites.  Please go to NCCAOM COVID-19 Updates page and ASA Coronavirus COVID-19 Resource Page for more information. 
As part of our effort to provide additional services to our Diplomates, candidates and PDA providers, we have implemented several measures to assist our stakeholders during this challenging time. We are 100 percent operational as all of our staff, including our Customer Relations team at our Washington D.C. headquarters, are working virtually and securely through our paperless Association Management System.  NCCAOM Diplomates can contact them for assistance with certification renewal as we are working case-by-case with our Diplomates who may need extra time due to COVID-19 impact to complete their continuing education credits. In addition, we are featuring an article in this issue about our new continuing education reporting phase coming up this year. We have dedicated a special email account to inquiries related to the impact of COVID-19 at COVID19@thenccaom.org
Our NCCAOM Approved PDA Providers are experiencing faster course approval processes through the new PDA Provider portal so we encourage our Diplomates to check out the many online continuing education courses that are now available at the NCCAOM PDA Directory. If you need information on becoming a PDA provider or would like to offer an online course, please contact our experienced PDA staff at pda@thenccaom.org.
We hope you will find the Spring issue of our newsletter informative and thank you for your continued understanding and support as we all try to navigate this rapidly changing situation.
Most importantly, please stay safe and healthy.

Mina M. Larson, M.S., MBA, CAE
NCCAOM Chief Executive Officer 

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Advocacy Update


By Molly Giammarco, Senior Manager,Government Relations

The NCCAOM® Advocacy team continues to represent NCCAOM certification, Diplomates, and stakeholders by providing information to promote acupuncture services to state and federal policymakers to include the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), as well as other stakeholder groups. 


COVID-19 Response

The NCCAOM recognizes that disruptions resulting from the COVID-19 emergency pose many professional challenges and uncertainties. While advocacy and government relations efforts below will continue, the NCCAOM government relations team has shifted its focus to advocating for acupuncturists during this emergency and keeping Diplomates informed and supported. 

Through the CARES Act, the federal government has created or expanded several small- business relief programs to help small-business owners who cannot work or whose work is disrupted due to COVID-19. The NCCAOM created a COVID-19 Resource Page  to provide Diplomates information about available resources, state and federal initiatives, and guidance for seeking small-business support.

The NCCAOM government relations team has also developed guidance documents to help Diplomates navigate relief provisions within the CARES Act: 

Each week, the NCCAOM and the ASA host a town hall to keep acupuncturists informed of ongoing small-business relief initiatives and resources, telehealth options, legislative efforts, unemployment expansions, student resources, and what to expect in the near and long-term future for the profession and the U.S. response. 

  • April 1 Town Hall : Provided an overview of the CARES Act, practice guidance during COVID-19, telehealth options, herbal-supply lines, wellness during COVID-19, and the NCCAOM certification exam schedules and updates.
  • April 7 Town Hall: Provided a deep dive into the CARES Act small-business components, herbal-supply lines.
  • April 14 Town Hall: Focuses on guidance for students and schools, exam-schedule modifications. 
  • April 22 Town Hall:  The NCCAOM government relations team and ASA will provide an overview of the latest federal government relief provisions (Phase IV of federal relief legislation), the effect the COVID-19 emergency will have on the profession’s advocacy strategy, the profession post-COVID-19.

The NCCAOM government relations team is on hand to provide guidance to Diplomates on state and federal emergency-relief initiatives for small businesses and welcome your questions: advocacy@thenccaom.org. Relief efforts are changing each day. The NCCAOM government relations team actively monitors these developments and will continue to keep Diplomates updated. 

To read the full Advocacy Update please click here.


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NCCAOM Board of Commissioners 2020 Update


New NCCAOM Board of Commissioners Chair

Iman Majd, MD, MS, EAMP, Dip. ABFM, ABoIM, Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM)®, DABMA, ABIHM, Certified GUNN-IMS 

The NCCAOM Board of Commissioners congratulates Dr. Iman Majd on his appointment as the Chair of the NCCAOM Board of Commissioners. Iman Majd, MD, MS, EAMP, Dip. ABFM, ABoIM, Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM)®, DABMA, ABIHM, Certified GUNN-IMS has been a member of the NCCAOM Board of Commissioners since 2014. Prior to joining the board Dr. Majd earned his medical degree at Tehran University of Medical Sciences and completed his residency in Family Medicine at the University of Washington. Dr. Majd achieved his Master of Science in Acupuncture from Bastyr University and is board-certified by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) and the American Board of Medical Acupuncture (ABMA). In pursuit of his passion for integrative medicine, Dr. Majd became board-certified by the American Board of Integrative Medicine (ABoIM), and now combines complementary modalities into his clinical practice at the University of Washington Physicians Network. He also serves as the Acupuncture Specialist Consult for University of Washington Neighborhood Clinics. Dr. Majd’s clinical and research interests include an integrative approach to neurodegenerative disorders, pain management and immune system wellness.

Dr. Majd has served on the Board of the Washington East Asian Medical Association. Throughout his career, his true passion lay in teaching: he is a clinical instructor at the University of Washington Department of Family Medicine, and Adjunct Faculty at Bastyr University where he supervises, trains and teaches in areas of clinical acupuncture, immune system wellness, pain management, pharmacology and western medicine.


New NCCAOM Board of Commissioners Members

Dr. Jayne Tsuchiyama, D.A.O.M., Dipl. O.M. (NCCAOM)® D.Ac.

The NCCAOM Board of Commissioners welcomes. Dr. Tsuchiyama is a graduate of Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, NY. She earned her Doctorate in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, San Diego. Dr. Tsuchiyama is a licensed acupuncturist in New York and Hawaii and an NCCAOM diplomate since 2004. She founded and runs the acupuncture programs in the cancer and women’s centers at The Queens Medical Center, the largest hospital in the Pacific Basin. Appointed by two governors, she served for 8 years on the state Board of Acupuncture - four years as Chair.

Dr Tsuchiyama has been a four-time recipient of major annual grants from Susan G Komen for the Cure to support a program to provide acupuncture treatment for low income breast cancer patients.


Nicholas Dougherty D.A.O.M., L.Ac., Dipl. Ac. (NCCAOM)®

The NCCAOM Board of Commissioners welcomes Dr. Nicholas Dougherty. Having a passion for health and wellness and having a strong need to bring his unique vision of healing to the world, Dr. Dougherty has been a Licensed Acupuncturist and NCCAOM diplomate since 2013. He has had a strong desire to serve both his local community of patients through clinical outreach as well as his fellow acupuncturists by joining the MN Acupuncture Association as a board director in 2015 for which he currently serves as President.  He has had a strong desire to serve both his local community of patients through clinical outreach as well as his fellow acupuncturists by joining the MN Acupuncture Association as a board director in 2015 for which he currently serves as President. 

Dr. Dougherty has worked in private practice settings as well as one of the leading Integrative Medicine clinics in the United States, the Penny George Institute for Health and Healing. Through this work, he has garnered a unique view on the integrative approach to healthcare.

Dr. Dougherty is a graduate of the Master's program at the American Academy of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AAAOM) in Minnesota, 2009. His need for further personal advancement and passion for education led Dr. Dougherty to continue his education by enrolling in the first doctorate program for TCM in Minnesota, of which he graduated in 2018 with a focus on integrative psychology and reproductive health.

To view the full NCCAOM Board of Commissioners please click here.



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NCCAOM to Unveil Continuing Education Reporting Automation



The NCCAOM is excited to launch the new continuing education reporting automation portal that will allow NCCAOM Diplomates to bank their professional development activity (PDA/CEU) points in their NCCAOM portal making the certification renewal process more streamlined and easier. 

The NCCAOM Online Portal Automation did not stop with the launch of the new Association Management System (AMS) in November of 2018. By working closely with PDA Providers since September of 2019, the NCCAOM has been transitioning to an automated PDA Certificate distribution system directly from the PDA Provider portal. This transition is planned to be completed by May 1, 2020. 


As a certified Diplomate, please make sure you receive a newly branded PDA Certificate of Completion for all courses taken after May 1, 2020.

As a PDA Provider, you must transition to the online PDA Certificate distribution system by May 1, 2020. Please contact the PDA staff at PDA@thenccaom.org for training and assistance.

Continuing Education Reporting System for PDA Approved Courses

After May 1, 2020, the NCCAOM staff will work with PDA providers to begin Phase III of the NCCAOM Online Portal Automation:  CE Reporting. The switch to CE Reporting will be conducted on a case-by-case basis throughout 2020 where each provider will be guided through the process by the NCCAOM IT Department and PDA staff. The case-by-case approach is necessary because when the PDA Certificate is emailed to the attendee, the PDA points will automatically be recorded in the Diplomate’s NCCAOM Recertification Transcript.  

Attention All PDA Providers: Schedule your Phase III implementation by contacting the NCCAOM PDA Department at PDA@thenccaom.org.


New View of Recertification Transcript:  The top ‘Requirements’ section provides a general overview of the total number of PDA points approved. The bottom section ‘Total CEs Reported’ is a breakdown of courses completed with their assigned PDA points and recertification categories.

Stay tuned for further developments.


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Chinese Herbal Compounding and Safety Certificate Course


By Jennifer Nemeth, M.Ed., Director of PDA and Education

Coming Soon! NCCAOM’s Chinese Herbal Compounding and Safety Certificate Course 

NCCAOM is excited to announce that the voluntary Chinese Herbal Compounding and Safety (CHCS) Certificate of Qualification (COQ) will be launched this year! The Certificate of Qualification is designed for Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine (TCHM) practitioners who custom compound herbal prescriptions following a one-on-one consultation with their own patient (FDA.Gov. CFR 11). The CHCS COQ online course consists of 10 modules where the practitioner will learn how to comply with the FDA’s Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) for dietary supplements (herbs). This course is based upon the American Herbal Products Association (AHPA)’s White Paper, Good Herbal Compounding and Dispensing Practices.


Key aspects of the course include:

  • TCHM Regulatory Requirements
  • TCHM-Compounding & Dispensing Terms
  • Essential Responsibilities for Personnel
  • Facility Organization & Sanitation Protocols
  • Equipment Design, Calibration, & Cleansing Requirements
  • Quality Control Features, Labels, & Procedures
  • Appropriate Herb-Compounding & Dispensing Practices
  • Appropriate Packaging, Labeling, & Storage Methods
  • Herb Compounding & Dispensing Record Management
  • Procedures for Complaints, Recalls, & Serious Adverse Events

Practitioners who complete the course will earn 10 PDA points (3 AOM-CH; 3 AOM-BIO; 2 SA; 2 ET) and receive theNCCAOM® CHCS COQ Badge that can be used in marketing, social media, emails, resumes and displayed in the patient area to showcase the additional training. For more information, visit the NCCAOM website here.

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NCCAOM Diplomate Spotlight: Shellie Rosen


As part of the team responsible for the NCCAOM Chinese Herbal Compounding and Safety Certificate Course, Shellie Rosen was selected for this edition of NCCAOM Diplomate Spotlight. The NCCAOM is also proud to announce the launch of the new Diplomate Spotlight page on the NCCAOM website. Now all past Diplomate Spotlights are easily accessible in one location.

It is wonderful that you are an NCCAOM National Board-Certified Acupuncturist, Tell us a little about your work in the Chinese medicine community.

The barriers that practitioners and patients face in defining the rigor that goes into professional herb-prescriptions inspired my work at the state and national levels. I studied and shared the message of Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine (TCHM) quality with students, educators, practitioners, patients, legislators, and industry members. Over the past decade, I’ve taught many courses on TCHM Compounding and Dispensing. Folks have generated a passion for herb-quality as a result of our time together. We are all working together in the TCHM community to find the right balance between the art form of TCHM design and the rigor of quality and safety of prepared herbal-medicines. My work in the community has been about interjecting the conversation of quality with medical peers to increase their understanding of the products TCHM professionals prescribe to their patients. A practitioner’s awareness of product quality can lead to better-informed patients and medical peers. Patient compliance begins when they commit to taking their herb-prescriptions, and it continues as the patient has faith and support in the ongoing process of herbal-therapy. The more patients understand about protections in place to guarantee their herb-formulas are free from harmful substances, the more they can participate with their TCHM practitioner.

To read the full Diplomate Spotlight please click here


To visit the new Diplomate Spotlight web page please click here

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