To:  TCMAA Board Members and Friends
From: Yong Ming Li, TCMAA (www.TCMAA.org)
Re: New York Pain Management Hearing, Pain Management Legislation, A. 10407
Date: 11/10/2004

Attached is a report from World Journal on the New York Assembly Hearing regarding Pain Management Legislation, A. 10407, by New York State Assembly.

The participation of TCMAA members made a big difference. The Chairman, Mr. Richard Gottfried (Member of Assembly of New York State) realized “his mistake not including non-medication management for pain in the proposed Bill” when his saw the names of TCMAA members on the list of testimony. After hearing from presentations of TCMAA members, Mr. Gotfried clearly stated “we should include acupuncture into this Bill for pain management”. He also supports that, maybe through a separate bill, to require the insurance coverage of acupuncture treatment.

The next hearing on the same issue will be held in late January, 2005, in Albany, NY. If you or your patients want to participate, please contact the committee at:
Tel (581) 455-4941 or BerginS@assembly.state.ny.us

Finally, I would like to thank those who participate this hearing, especially, those who testified, including Mr. Laurence Singer, Dr. Ling Zheng and Dr. Xinru Qian.  I also encourage everyone take opportunities in the future to promote the development of acupuncture and TCM in New York and other States.

World Journal, 11/6/2004

痛症管理擬立法 納入針灸
州眾議會公聽 華裔專業人士力陳另類療法貢獻

 紐約州眾議會 5 日為痛症管理舉行公聽會,美國中醫藥專業學會及中醫院校同學會 (TCMAA) 的會長李永明 (前排左一 )與律師Laurence Singer( 前排左二 )力陳針灸另類療法的好處及安全性,獲得主席的重視。右一為該學會副會長鄭靈。(本報記者姚增馨攝)

【本報記者姚增馨紐約報導】紐約州眾議會5日在紐約市下城的州眾議會辦公室為痛症管理法草案舉行公聽會,美國中醫藥專業學會及中醫院校同學會(TCMAA)多人前往,獲得議會重視,決定將針灸納入擬設立的痛症管理法草案中。

昨日公聽會由州眾議員 Richard Gottfried 主持,另一位州眾議員Jonathan Bing 也參加,兩名主張痛症管理應納入立法的議員表示,多年來,疼痛治療分屬於醫學不同領域,沒有專科、管理紊亂,應該立法專門管理,但在先前考慮立法時,只注意到藥物止痛的問題,昨天公聽會聽到幾位中醫針灸治療師的說法,了解到針灸等另類療法也對疼痛治療很有貢獻,所以將在擬具草案時,將針灸等另類療法也納入。

TCMAA 會長李永明昨天會後很興奮的表示,這是一大突破,對於州眾議會願意將針灸納入草案,他感到非常高興,因為痛症立法管理是一項新行動,若針灸能被納入草案中,對於將來爭取保險全面給付非常有利。

TCMAA 副會長鄭靈表示,以他在曼哈坦中城開業10年的經驗顯示,美國主流社會人士對針灸的接受程度很高,雖然大多數保險不給付,但病人都願意自掏腰包看病,而現在針灸師執照在美國已經制度化,若能順利納入痛症立法,將來許多醫學院也會增加針灸的課程。

李永明、鄭靈、TCMAA 法律顧問 Laurence Singer 在公聽會上提出許多數據,證明針灸對止痛的用處及安全性,兩位州眾議員亦針對針灸提問。

出席支持疼痛立法管理的病人代表是69歲的退休教師Cynthia Hildt,她17歲開始背痛迄今 ,能做的脊椎手術都做過了,她說,疼痛不但讓她喪失最愛的教師工作、財務困窘,且造成個人無法獨立,必須依賴他人。

她希望喚醒眾人,了解痛症必須納為醫院專科,不能讓病人求助無門。