Tag Archive for: acupuncture

Auckland COVID update

Yes, we’re open 🟢

Latest update:

We are fully operational in the traffic light system. Learn what we’re doing about COVID safety.


Auckland Level 3 restrictions have been extended. Is acupuncture permitted at Level 3 lockdown?

Starting 21/08/2021 we have been given the green light to see patients, while following strict criteria and protocols. We are both relieved and excited.

Because we are limiting our capacity for face-to-face appointments, if you need to see us, please get in touch now.

As a part of the current Ministry of Health requirements, to establish if you require a face-to-face appointment, we need to know why you need to see us ahead of your appointment.

To make it safer, we’re limiting our capacity, if you need to see us, get in touch as soon as possible to secure an appointment.


Dr Vitalis Acupuncture

Update 20/08/2021

We are cautiously optimistic, we can start taking appointments soon.

Our professional organizations are in discussion with the Ministry of Health to permit acupuncture in the current alert level. The information we have received today, 20 October, has been both contradictory and has been changing by the hour. We hope to have some clarity by the end of the week.

If you need an appointment, please get in touch today, so that we can waitlist you.

Kia kaha!

Dr Vitalis Acupuncture

*Update 21/10/2021

We have just received an email from ACC regarding allied health professionals:

“Due to community spread of COVID-19 in Alert Level 3 areas, telehealth is still the preferred option where possible. Face-to-face services are allowed where:

  • Treatment cannot be delayed or carried out remotely without risk of significant harm or permanent and/or significant disability, or
  • Failure to access services will lead to an acute deterioration of a known condition, or
  • Delay in access to services will impact the consumer’s ability to maintain functional independence and significantly negatively impact quality of life, and
  • Services can’t be delivered by a similar service which is currently operating, or by clinicians already in contact with the patient for ongoing care.”

What are allied health professionals?

Dental therapy/oral health therapy
Medical Laboratory Science/Anaesthetic Technology
Occupational Therapy

Acupuncture is currently not regulated under the Health Practitioners Assurance Act. Recently the goverment has made a decision to regulate acupucture under HPCA Act, and therfore the Ministry of Health suggested that acupuncture is to be treated as allied health proffesion in this instance.

Why is acupuncture not considered an “essential service”?

Yes, the consistency with the assessment of what is essential is lacking.

For example:

  • General practitioners are considered essential, but the same GPs with a special interest – no. Specialist care is also considered essential. Does it make sense? No.
  • Hand therapy and physio are an essential service, but not podiatry.

We do appreciate, that during the first lockdown a quick decision was made, there was no time to and consistently assess what is essential. Didn’t we have COVID situation long enough to have consistency, allowing patients in emergency and acute needs to access the health service they require?

Our patients having acute needs include ones undergoing IVF treatments, cancer pain, severe pelvic pain (endometriosis, chronic pelvic pain, acute period pain), recurrent miscarriages (currently pregnant), atrial fibrillation, migraines to name a few.

How is recurrent miscarriage an acute need, you say? If you had 8 miscarriages that did not last 8 weeks, you started acupuncture and now you’re 9 weeks pregnant for the very first time. How discontinuing the ongoing treatment will affect you?

Acupuncture evidence trends

Interest in Acupuncture is heating up

Acupuncture is the most researched natural therapy. And the scientific interest in Acupuncture is increasing.

The graph illustrates a number of studies on acupuncture yearly in the PubMed database from 1996 to 2012. I used actual data from them for this graph.  I’ve excluded data from 2013, as at the time of this observation the year was still in progress.

Bells palsy celebrity acupuncture

Acupuncture for Bell’s Palsy

An American celebrity Carnie Wilson: “Who believes in Acupuncture? I’m treating my Bell’s Palsy with it. IT’S WORKING.” (more on medicaldaily.com)

Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy has been recommended by the World Health Organization since 2002.

There were a number of controlled trials which looked into its effectiveness. The latest study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal has shown not only that acupuncture is effective for Bell’s Palsy. It also showed, that stronger acupuncture stimulation was leading to significantly better results.

This finding will help us to treat this condition with acupuncture more effectively. It is also important because it adds to the evidence that acupuncture effect is much more than just a placebo.

Reference: reference:
Xu SB, et al “Effectiveness of strengthened stimulation during acupuncture for the treatment of Bell palsy: A randomized controlled trial” CMAJ 2013; DOI: 10.1503/cmaj.121108