Thursday, September 8, 2011

Latest News

A Collaboration of the Humanitarian Acupuncture groups Barefoot Acupuncturists, Acupuncture Ambassadors and TCM Social Forum has led to the formation of a Humanitarian Asian Medicine Community Forum: Promoting Humanitarian and Volunteer work in the Asian medicine community. Please join the conversation at one of our strategic partners site:

There are so many opportunities for the medicine of Acupuncture to be integrated into the global healthcare system. Especially in the treatment of Anxiety, depression and PTSD.

Doctors Battle Psychological Trauma in Dadaab Refugee Camps


Acupuncture Ambassadors is always looking for those in our community who are exploring the rising movement of “Humanitarian Acupuncture”. Here are two outstanding thinkers in our field:

In her 2009 dissertation “Acupuncture in Humanitarian Work” Joanna Bond, then an acupuncture student from the United Kingdom, talked about the volumes of information about mainstream humanitarian organizations. She states: “Humanitarian Aid and Development are areas that have been widely researched with much discussion of politics, ethics and efficiency of organizations, movements and trends. Less well known is the part that Acupuncture plays in humanitarian efforts-this is an area that has not had great deal of attention from either researchers or the media and there is a complete lack of explorative, or analytical work to look at the spread and growth of this work, the reasons why and how it emerges, who is doing it and with what success. There also appears to be no opportunities for shared learning for theses organizations and charities using Acupuncture for humanitarian means, such as a website where information can be posted and a forum for discussions, and no publications dedicated to looking at this kind of humanitarian work.” The full text of this dissertation is available on Jo’s website: and Jo can be contacted by email

Social Justice, Medical Aid, and Acupuncture. Part 1: Voluntourism
Collaboration, Musing, Research Aug, 2011
Beth Griffing, an almost-Acupuncturist, Researcher and Adventurer will be taking a four month trip to learn about traditional Thai and Chinese medicine in Thailand next year, and has been pondering the significance of medical volunteer work abroad. What is the goal of medical service in other countries? Why do we volunteer in other areas when there are certainly people in need of free medical services in our own countries, states, cities and communities? It can seem like the flight of fancy of a privileged class of practitioners, or an extension of the colonial or missionary mindset, but on the ground what does it offer to the travelers and to the communities they work with?

See Beth’s interesting and thoughtful analysis of Medical Aid in general and the growing movement of Acupuncture in Humanitarian Aid can be a double edged sword in global health.

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