As the winds of change sweep through the healthcare landscape, the acupuncture profession stands at a crossroads, and as is the nature of a crossroads– there is uncertainty. But as with any crisis, there is both danger and opportunity. It is an opportunity to consider where we have been as a profession and what kind of future we’d like to see for ourselves and our profession. 

Perhaps it’s time to retool our approach to how our medicine fits into the landscape of modern America. Maybe it’s time to pause and examine how we have approached our education and business practices. This may be how we ensure a place for acupuncture in the ever-evolving landscape of healthcare.

In this conversation with Lisa Rohleder, we chew over the state of our profession, including an out-of-the-box approach to integrative medicine, the issue of student debt, changing our perspectives to thrive as small businesses, and how we fit into today’s economic and medical landscape. 

We also weigh up on the potential withering of our organizational infrastructure and possible ways forward.

Listen into this discussion on why we may need to reimagine our education model and business approach to our practice.


In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • Trade schools for acupuncture?
  • The issue with trying to reproduce the conventional healthcare system’s medical model
  • Reimagining integrative medicine
  • Navigating the difficult business of acupuncture education
  • A crisis moment for acupuncture: Could we be looking at the demise of our profession?
  • Calling BS on the idea of ‘encroachment’ into our profession
  • Making our field more friendly for small businesses
  • When going to acupuncture school is not a good idea
  • The NCCAOM, professional organizational infrastructure, and the need for different channels of communication

The most overlooked and most important aspect of an acupuncturist’s job is the ability to hold space.

I’m a co-founder and co-director of POCA Tech, the only accredited acupuncture school dedicated to training community acupuncturists. I’ve been a licensed acupuncturist in Oregon since 1994 and I’ve worked in one capacity or another for Working Class Acupuncture for the last twenty years.

I’ve written and self published several books about community acupuncture: Acupuncture Is Like Noodles, and Acupuncture Points Are Holes: a Case Study in Social Entrepreneurship.

I think acupuncture safety is fascinating because it’s the intersection of all sorts of issues related to acupuncture in general. I blog at



Links and Resources

Read Lisa's thought provoking blog: Acu Safety Nerd

Visit Lisa at (where else?) Working Class Acupuncture
A Technical School for acupuncture? Here it is: Poca Tech.

Poca Tech is in the midst of a fund raiser to help cover the costs of re-accreditation, you can contribute to that effort by following this link.


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Shop Talk with Michelle Grasek
on Tuning up Your Email Maketing


In today's Shop Talk segment, Michelle Grasek, acupuncturist and marketing strategist, shares actionable tips to help you get better results from your email marketing.

She also addresses frequently asked questions that she often gets from marketing students and clients, including, “What if I'm annoying people by sending email?” “What the heck am I supposed to write about?” and “Who has time to write a consistent email newsletter?” 

Her goal is to help you send simple emails that get more patients on your schedule. 

She's also offering a discount code for Qiological listeners for her Year of Email Templates for Acupuncturists. If you feel like writing emails is simply not your thing, Michelle's done it for you. This is a collection of 26+ emails she sends to her own patients, focused on pain, anxiety, and digestion, among other topics. All you have to do is copy and paste the emails, edit quickly to match your clinic, and hit send. 

You can take a look at the templates here and use the discount code QIOLOGICAL30 to save $30. Enjoy!


Hi there, I'm Michelle! I'm the host of the Acupuncture Marketing School podcast. I'm a practicing acupuncturist and marketing strategist and I've been teaching marketing, both online and in-person, for 9 years. In that time, I've taught marketing to over 3,500 acupuncturists. It’s my mission to help you grow your business using marketing techniques that are genuine and generous.

Through my articles and online PDA courses, I aim to help you outline a strategy, focus on marketing that’s authentic, and get new patients every week. I share all of my practice-building tips at and on social media @michellegrasek.