Telemedicine or Telehealth for Acupuncture Practices during Covid-19, an Attorney Point of View – Joseph R. Borich III, J.D

Little doubt exists that telemedicine, or more properly telehealth, is here to stay unless COVID-19 wipes us out, sends us back into the stone age, or so ruins the economy that even this non-face-to-face healthcare treatment is no longer available. The virus has certainly made people afraid to venture out of their homes and turn to video calls. More likely, COVID-19 will result in the expansion of telemedicine, not just in the United States, but around the world, albeit expanding in different ways.

Telemedicine is hardly new. Healthcare providers began experimenting with telemedicine by phone and radio in the early 20th century. In the 1960s and ’70s, NASA funding and the rise of television allowed the possibilities to take shape. Since the 1990s, the increased use of personal devices and the Internet have led to more and more telehealth applications. But resistance to telemedicine has remained, at least until the stimulus of the coronavirus pandemic, based largely on reimbursement issues. And both practitioners and patients have been reluctant to adopt the practice because it eliminates the human touch. For Chinese medicine and acupuncture practitioners, it’s particularly important to have the person-person interactions to perform the four-diagnostic approaches, Inspection, Listening/Smelling, Inquiring and Palpation. One expert summarizes the history and future of telemedicine as follows:

Telemedicine has been used to improve patient outcomes for more than 50-years. Transmission of digital and video imagery, or store-and-forward telehealth, has been a standard of radiologists since the 1980s. But widespread access to broadband has enabled clinicians to offer video consults to their patients as a regular part of their practice. By 2016, more than 60% of healthcare providers offered their patients some form of virtual interaction for services. By 2017, that number had risen to 76%- and it shows no signs of slowing down.

Covid-19 has very quickly mandated that entire health care segments go virtual. Telemedicine lets patients remain inside their homes to slow the spread of the virus and hospitals can better prepare for a surge of patients into emergency rooms and intensive care units. Many acupuncture practitioners started telehealth to help their patients while staying home to avoid spreading of the virus.

So, what are we talking about? Yes, any reader could probably come up with a definition of telemedicine or maybe even telehealth, but for compliance issues, let’s make certain that we know what we are talking about Telehealth is actually the broader concept, although sometimes the terms are used interchangeably. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services notes that telehealth’s definition is broader in scope than that of telemedicine, covering remote healthcare services that are both clinical and non-clinical. The term “telemedicine,” on the other hand, is limited to remote clinical services. Subsequently, the American Telemedicine Association uses the two terms interchangeably, both encompassing a wide definition of remote healthcare.

But even though telehealth is the broader concept, let’s start with telemedicine.

Although a number of definitions exist, one of a number of accurate ones is “the remote delivery of healthcare services, including exams and consultations, over the telecommunications infrastructure”. Telemedicine allows healthcare providers to evaluate, diagnose and treat patients without the need for an in-person visit. Patients can communicate with physicians from their homes by using their own personal technology or by visiting a dedicated telehealth kiosk. A perhaps more simplistic definition is “the treatment of people who are ill, by sending information from one place to another by computer, video, etc.” Note that telemedicine does not include the use of audio­ only telephone, facsimile machine, or email.

Telehealth, on the other hand, is broader, “the use of electronic information and telecommunications technologies to support long-distance clinical health care, professional health-related education, public health, and health administration.”

In summary, The World Health Organization notes the difference between telehealth and telemedicine, “where telehealth uses computer-assisted telecommunications to support management, surveillance, literature and access to medical knowledge, while telemedicine uses telecommunications solely to diagnose and treat patients”.  So, most traditional Chinese medical practices fall under the heading of telehealth and can be used.

Make sure to check with your state of licensure for more details on your state requirements for Telehealth and Telemedicine and how that pertains to Acupuncture and TCM modalities.

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Practitioner Corner: June Spotlight – Amy Mager, DACM, L.Ac., FABORM, Dipl.OM

Covid-19 Was In The House

Our skills don’t just benefit our patients, but our families as well

Amy Mager, DACM, L.Ac., FABORM, Dipl.OM

In December 2019, we were all hearing about COVID-19 in China and Europe. On March 1st, the first case arrived in Westchester, NY. My Mom’s elder community went into immediate lockdown. Upon hearing that news, my husband and I spoke of retrieving 5 of our 6 children who were in school or working in NY, Boston and Philadelphia. We knew it was a risk to bring them home and that one or more of them more than likely had been exposed to COVID-19 despite me sending them N95 masks to wear on the subways and when out in public. All of my children were given Yu Ping Feng San to take to build their Wei Qi. They each also had Xiao Chai Hu Tang if they started to experience symptoms and were taught when and how to use it. In the words of my father, of blessed memory, “It’s better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it.”

As acupuncturists and practitioners of TCM, we were dutifully watching videos from all of our teachers, particularly from John Chen. Learning, ordering herbal medicines (some of which were already out of stock), and planning for what we knew was coming. In mid-March, as many states shut down, COVID-19 was in the HOUSE – our house. Two of my sons had the version that began with a huge and sudden chill, then came fever (no one fevered over 101.5 in the house due to TCM and other supportive tx), cough, nausea, diarrhea and severe headache. Jia Jian Xiao Chai Hu Tang as needed until the symptoms shifted. Shortness of breath was the biggest challenge with the fever. We switched to Jia Jian Qing Fei Tang for their specific symptoms of cough and shortness of breath – Jia Jian with the herbs listed below. My goal was to keep them out of the hospital. So along with TCM we used oregano oil, Vitamin C 1,000 mg 4x/day, Vitamin D3 in a gelcap 4,000 iu/day, Zinc 30 mcg day, NAC, N-acytlcysteine both long and short acting and Kali Bichromium 30C to open the lungs. The NAC and Kali Birchromium both do what Tian Hua Fen does: thin mucus and break up phlegm obstruction.

The shortness of breath experienced in this virus, due to the tenacity of the phlegm, made me want to address the phlegm from different directions. Dr. CS Cheung, Founding President of ACTCM, drilled into us that we have diagnosis, treatment principle and treatment grids in TCM. When we know the functions of a drug or herb or supplement, add it to the grid. This phlegm is thick and tenacious. To open tubules I added eucalyptus chest rub which resolves phlegm and opens tubules and added Sang Bai Pi, Pi Pa Ye, Xing Ren, Tian Hua, Jie Geng and Ban Xia to my herbal formulas. Instead of the typical 1-2x/day, my children (ages 16-27) received 6-8 doses/day.

Goals: keep them 1. out of the hospital and, 2. keep their fever under 103 (if possible), to make their recovery as easy as possible. We were pushing electrolytes all day. We kept the boys separated upstairs on the third floor.

The first two young men to go down responded well. Two days later, one of their sisters presented with a profound earache and throbbing headache behind her eye. Two days later, it was my other daughter. I addressed their symptoms with a different variation of Jia Jian Xiao Chai Hu Tang and later a variation of Qing Fei Tang. We took temperatures with an infrared thermometer and found the last pulse oximeter to be had in Springfield, MA in early March and monitored their pulse oxygenation rates. The girls’ oxygen levels dipped as expected and went down to 93/94 which we could coax up by putting them on their bellies and percussing their backs. Meanwhile, I was having symptoms and was still taking care of the children because my husband did not know the difference between the formulas, or how to take them. Each of my children was unwell for 7-10 days. Two of them got better and then got worse, with significant shortness of breath. Just like when children have whooping cough, sitting with them, breathing with them, in through their nose and out through their mouths, and not panicking matters. Eyes were on the prize which was keeping all of us out of the hospital.

I treated all of the children as I treat patients: by determining diagnosis, treatment principle, and guiding formula. Can we use a patent? Do we want to? Knowing what form of herbs the patient is willing to take does matter. I have patients who would willingly take herbs in the following formulations: as a tincture, granules as tea, granules in capsules and those who would take patents only.

As we were preparing for Passover in the time of COVID-19, child number 6 went down, and child number 3 came home. He came home later than everyone else, was mostly quarantining but had seen his best friend, whose roommate ended up in an ICU to treat COVID-19 by the time he came home. Number 6 had severe headache, fevered for 9 days, was treated appropriately and recovered more easily than those who had cough and shortness of breath. My husband and child number 3 were either impervious or asymptomatic. Neither of them expressed any symptoms.

All of them recovered (although some did have some tachycardia when standing up too quickly for a few weeks and weakness with activity) for several weeks. They did not think they were doing too much too soon but it was too much for their bodies. I liken it to postpartum. Many women want to get up and start to do too much too quickly. In postpartum care, womens’ breasts and their lochia/post birth bleeding are their barometers. Do too much, you bleed more. Do too much, you will get clogged milk ducts. Really don’t pay attention, you may develop mastitis. COVID-19 recovery is a process, not an event. Treating what we see with TCM if we cannot physically get to our patients makes a difference. Knowing what we know and using our skills and the medicine to treat our family? Priceless.

*The information provided here is for healthcare professional practitioners only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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Practitioner Corner: February Spotlight Belinda He, DAOM, Dipl.OM (NCCAOM), LAc, LMT, CPMT

I am a graduate of American College of Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine in Houston, TX where I spent 4 years earning my Masters of Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine (MAOM). I am also a graduate of The American Academy of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine in Roseville, Minnesota where I have obtained Doctor of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (DAOM). I am a national certified and Taxes State Licensed Acupuncturist and Herbalist. Licensed Massage Therapist, Certified Pediatric Massage Therapist.

It is the goal of my practice to help patients improve and maintain optimal health through prevention and natural healing. I use principles of classical Chinese Medicine integrated with modern scientific analysis and technology to work with the body’s innate healing ability. By using a variety of natural approaches including acupuncture, diet, exercise, and other therapeutic methods, I map out a holistic path to treat common ailments and complex conditions based on each individual’s needs.

I help a wide range of disorders caused either by emotional or physical imbalances. I recognize our body’s intrinsic wisdom and work with each patient to achieve optimal health and wellness. My treatments are based on individual evaluations along with dietary recommendations, herbal medicine, and breathing exercises as a holistic approach.

I have been running The Woodlands Acupuncture & Herbal Clinic in The Woodlands, TX. since 2011. TCMzone was my first choice for herbal products, because I heard about the high quality and trustworthiness of TCMzone while in school and as a graduate from practitioner colleagues. TCMzone has continued to provide comprehensive and high-quality herbal products. They are the #1 most popular herbal products in my clinic because of the quality, safety and purity.

Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine provides a complete system of medicine that is person-centric as opposed to disease-centric. It provides the resources that allow an individuals unique self to heal. Therefore, these two methods are invaluable in my practice.

In general, American patients don’t like the test of original Chinese herbs, TCMzone gives the professional practitioner a wider variety of herbal choices. The most popular herbal products in America are capsules, granules, tablets and softgels. The softgel herbal formulas are my personal favorite from TCMzone: Liu Wei Di Huang, Yin Qiao, Yuanhu and Shuang Huang Lian, are “must-haves” in my herbal pharmacy.

Softgels are Scientifically Processed Chinese Herbs with a long list of advantages over other type of forms

  • Softgels are easily digested, easy to swallow, taste better and convenient to take
  • Patients surveyed also prioritized products that were safe, efficacious, and fast-acting—all benefits from the softgels
  • Sensitive ingredients are fully encapsulated and protected from tampering
  • Patients report reduced stomach discomfort when digesting softgels.

Liu Wei Di Huang (K001) Best formula to nourish Kidney Yin and clear deficiency heat, helps the Diabetes patients with XIAO KE syndrome; helps cancer patients with low energy and night sweats; and helps women suffering with menopausal symptoms.

Yuan Hu (K003) My patients refer to this formula as “natures pain killer”. From a TCM perspective, pain is caused by obstruction of Qi flow or blood circulation in the affected area. Many Chinese herbs are well known in TCM to move Qi energy and invigorate the Blood and may potentially relieve pain. Yan Hu Suo (Rhizoma Corydalis) is one of such Chinese herbs. Yuan Hu (K003) is a TCMzone signature formula that includes Rhizoma Corydalis and Bai zhi (Radix Angelicae Dahuricae), which helps reinforce the action of Corydalis.

February is the peak month of flu activity. Yin Qiao (K002) and Shuang Huang Lian (K006) help with seasonal flu. They can protect the body against the flu virus.

Yin Qiao (K002) It is most effective when symptoms such as sore throat, runny nose, and other discomfort occur at the beginning of cold syndrome. K002 is most helpful when the TCM pattern “Wind-Heat type cold” is present.

Shuang Huang Lian (K006) It is composed of Chinese herbs that are most known and potent in TCM to clear heat and resolve toxicity. Shuang Huang Lian formula is designed to help boost our immune function when our body already feels like it is rundown. It works best when the heat is in the upper respiratory track and fire is in the lung.

I am grateful to have this opportunity to share my practice experience with TCMzone softgel formulas. Many thanks to TCMzone for supplying us with the highest quality herbal products. I have always believed that through the efforts of TCM practitioners, Chinese herbal medicine will benefit more American patients.


*The information provided here is for healthcare professional practitioners only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

My Experience on the TCMzone Training & Study Program in China, May 2019 -Bruce Gustafson, LAc., DAOM Fellow, Associate Dean Emperor’s College of Traditional Oriental Medicine

I had been looking for a few years for the right time in my busy professional life to have the opportunity to travel and study TCM in China. With my eye on the TCMzone sponsored tour and their Clinic+Bruce_headshotprevious successes, I signed up for the May 2019 tour and study. It turned out to become the greatest study and travel experience I’ve had, and far exceeded my expectations.

After a direct flight to Beijing and checking in to our comfortable, modern 4-star hotel, we took advantage of an extra day before the formal tour started. Nearby was the Chinese Ethnic Cultural Heritage Park, with acres and acres of beautiful grounds, lakes and waterways, showcasing domestic buildings, art and cultural heritage of various ethnicities, all part of China’s history. It was a wonderful way to acclimate and enjoy strolling through the beautiful grounds.

Next day, our TCMzone tour began with a day full of sightseeing in and around Beijing. Our group met our Beijing based tour guide and interpreter, Selina, and off we went in our van outside the city, to climb and walk along the Great Wall, a sure bucket list experience not to be missed. I do wish we could have stayed a bit longer there, yet our busy day still included visits to the Temple of Heaven and the Forbidden City, to experience these great icons of Chinese cultural history.

On our last day in Beijing, we toured the Summer Palace, with its inspiring grounds, lakes and temples; after a group lunch, we were off to the train station for our bullet train journey to Shanghai, where the TCM training program would begin.

For the next two weeks of our program, our group was immersed in morning clinical rounds within different modules at Longhua Hospital, and then on to inspiring afternoon educational lectures at the Shanghai TCM University campus nearby. Our guides and interpreters for the two weeks in Shanghai, Curry and Kai were simply exceptional, both going way above and beyond expectations to make sure we were oriented, supported and well taken care of, and they were always available!

The hotel accommodations were 4-star wonderful, and an easy 10-minute walk to both the hospital and campus, through a lovely area of tree-lined streets, shops, restaurants, convenience stores, an herbal pharmacy, and just steps from a Metro station. This was a perfect location for access to our training locations and to all of Shanghai, as our group often made excursions outside of our studies, in the afternoons, evenings and day off.

In our daily small group rounds at Longhua Hospital, we had direct observation and interaction with physician/patient care, diagnosis and treatment recommendations in busy integrative settings, often seeing between 14-20 patients in a morning rounds session. There was opportunity to ask questions of the patients, or the treating physician, either directly or via our interpreters, if needed. We rotated daily among modules which included the Pulmonary, GI, Cardiology, Orthopedic/Traumatology, Oncology, Gynecology, Endocrine and Acupuncture departments. As a result of these observation days, I’ve gained some refreshing perspectives on treatment modalities, including some new acupuncture protocols to utilize in my own practice.

It was inspiring to actually experience TCM and Western based medicine approaches used together in an integrative way in an outpatient and inpatient hospital setting; to see how Chinese herbs were prescribed in clinical settings, both similarly and differently than we do in the US; and to see how the different departments and physicians would cross-refer, based on patient needs or wishes.

Shanghai TCM University is also keen on growing the acceptance of our medicine through research and evidence-based studies, so many of our afternoon educational lectures were also presentations on clinical TCM conditions that included contemporary research on various treatment modalities. Our group also had a 2-afternoon Powerpoint presentation and lecture on the 8-Extraordinary Vessels, which was the clearest and most accessible coverage on the topic I’ve experienced.

One of the nicest aspects of this trip was the balance of “work and play time.” With most afternoons and evenings free, our group would explore Shanghai, the old and modern sections, great restaurants, a high-end tea shop tasting in Old Shanghai, the Yu Gardens, the Pearl and Shanghai Towers, etc.

As part of the entire experience, TCMzone provided a guided day trip to Suzhou city where we toured an actual silk factory, the serene and gorgeous Master of Nets Gardens, and a gondola-type boat ride through the canals of Old Suzhou. This was one of our group’s favorite days off!

After the weeks of my satisfying and successful training experiences, on our last day we had a graduation ceremony at the Pudong campus of Shanghai TCM International University, toured their gorgeous and incredible museum filled with ancient Chinese artifacts, manuscripts, and exhibits on many of the leading Chinese physicians and thinkers throughout the long history of our medicine. Topping all of this off, we finished with a private tour of the herbal manufacturing facility TCM Zone herbs originate from. Here, we witnessed the thorough, detailed and scientific processes that are used to make sure these powdered extracts are the best possible we can offer to our patients.

This entire tour and training, sponsored by TCM Zone, was thoughtful, full of rewarding experiences and very well organized. I come away having had a deeply satisfying time and a wonderful travel/educational experience. I am intending to make use of another TCM Zone tour in the future, and I do not hesitate to recommend this opportunity to anyone interested in  advancing one’s knowledge and having an experience of Chinese culture and some of our TCM heritage.


*The information provided here is for healthcare professional practitioners only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Unlock the Mind to Find Your Calm with TCMzone’s New MindKalm® by Sherri Taylor, L.Ac.

It is my pleasure to introduce the newest addition to the TCMCeuticals line — MindKalm®, a new formula designed to soothe Liver Qi stagnation with phlegm misting the mind disturbing the Shen. As its name suggests, MindKalm® helps unlock the mind by sherri-taylor-smalltransforming phlegm, clearing heat and moving the stuck energy of the Liver Qi to clear the mind, creating more peace and harmony within. This formula may help people experiencing emotional distress and mind-body imbalance due to phlegm heat and Liver Qi stagnation*.
MindKalm® is formulated based on 3 classical formulas: Wen Dan Tang & Chai Hu Gui Zhi Tang (from the Shang Han Lun) and Ding Zhi Xiao Wan (from Sun Simiao’s “Qian Jin Yao Fang“). Dr. Wanshan Hao, an expert Professor on the Shang Han Lun, developed this formula based on over 40 years of professional experience helping people with emotional/Shen disturbances.  Dr. Wanshan Hao has a PhD in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and is widely known among his peers for his exceptional research in Chinese Medicine.
We are very excited to have this formula in our product line, delivering these ancient herbal formulas for use in your modern day clinic, administered with ease and success. Each box of MindKalm® includes 28 packets which is 2 weeks worth of the herbal formula. Take one 10g packet, twice daily after meals with warm water. You can begin assisting your clients today to unlock their mind and experience the joy of transforming their world into inner calm.
Have more questions on the use of TCMCeuticals in your clinic? Email to learn more. Local in AZ? Contact TCMzone to set up an appointment with our sales rep to come by to discuss in person.
*The information provided here is for healthcare professional practitioners only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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Practitioner Corner: August Spotlight, Byron Barth, L.Ac.

If you’re reading this you are more than likely involved in someway (practitioner, doctor, administrator, teacher, TCM business or sales) in this wonderful healing medicine/art. We are all truly lucky and blessed to have found Traditional Chinese Medicine as a wayByron_Cropped to heal people naturally and fulfill our own purpose.
My path began in the fine arts (Theater BA and English), with a degree from York University, in Toronto in 1991. I was a late bloomer, so to speak, because it took 6 more years after theater arts graduation for me to discover the healing arts. It was quite by chance that I was fortunate enough to receive three traditional floor style shiatsu massage sessions and there was no looking back. It was as if a light bulb went off and that light illuminated a new path. I quickly enrolled into The Shiatsu School of Canada in Toronto and it was through my shiatsu experience that I found acupuncture. I briefly attended The Toronto School of TCM and transferred to Pacific College of Oriental Medicine in San Diego where I graduated in 2002. My roots in shiatsu remained with me as I practiced shiatsu as a student in acupuncture school and continued to practice, as well as, teach shiatsu at Pacific College Oriental Medicine, Mueller College of Holistic Studies, International Professional School of Bodywork (IPSB) as well as teaching numerous seminars. In 2007, I released a 2.5 hour instructional DVD called The Art of Zen Shiatsu.
The Japanese style of acupuncture that I practice seemed a natural transition coming from shiatsu. The emphasis on the Hara/abdominal diagnosis as well as the Meridian therapy treatment style has similarities connecting Shiatsu and Japanese Style acupuncture.
I incorporate many herbal formulas into my practice and have been using TCMzone products for approximately 15 years.
I carry approximately 80 different TCMzone formulas in my practice and primarily prescribe capsules but do carry several formulas in granule packets, as well as, certain formulas in granule bottles. I also carry several individual herbs in the TCMzone granule packets and bottles when making individual formulas or formula modifications.
I trust TCMzone’s quality, potency, concentration and have seen first hand the effectiveness of TCMzone herbal products.
Your herbal pharmacy is a living entity that expands and grows with your practice. As you see more patients and treat varied and advanced conditions the need arises to incorporate more formulas and individual herbs into your practice.
My personal TCMzone herbal inventory musts and favorites would include: Bi Yan Pian, Yin Qiao San (softgel), Liu Wei Di Huang Wan (softgel), Pu Ji Xiao Du Yin, Xiao Chai Hu Tang, Xiao Feng San, Jia Wei Xiao Yao San, Gui Pi Tang, Long Dan Xie Gan Tang, Suan Zao Ren Tang, Tian Wan Bu Xin Dan, Xue Fu Zhu Yu Tang, Kan Ning San, Geng Nian An, Tian Ma Gou Teng Yin, Yu Ping Feng San and Zhi Bai Di Huang Wan.
It’s always exciting, extremely gratifying and rewarding when the correctly prescribed formula hits the “bull’s-eye” so to speak, and the patient’s symptoms respond favorably often with relative speed! The key obviously is correctly understanding the patients pattern of diagnosis and treating appropriately using Acupuncture and herbs. Abdominal diagnosis is a key cornerstone in Japanese style acupuncture and I will often prescribe formulas based on the pattern found through the abdominal palpation. The abdomen typically confirms the pulse, tongue and overall symptoms but it will frequently uncover a more deeper underlying and chronic pattern that herbal formulas are wonderful in addressing.

I recommend that you incorporate herbs in your pharmacy and the three delivery systems offered by TCMzone to make patient compliance very easy. Most patients prefer capsules because they are easy to take, but there are many patients that enjoy the experience and relaxation offered from drinking a cup of herbal tea. Herbs allow patients to be treated 2 to 3 times per day in between their acupuncture treatments allowing for deeper and faster daily healing.

I once again feel very blessed and honored to be part of this profession and offer deep gratitude and many thanks to TCMzone for advancing herbal medicine practices in the West and for their dedication in supplying us with the highest quality herbal products.

*The information provided here is for healthcare professional practitioners only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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Practitioners Corner: July Spotlight, Dr. Yoon Hang “John” Kim, M.D., MPH

I was drawn to medicine after reading my father’s medical text book in Korean which advocated combining the strengths of Eastern wisdom with Western sciences. My journey to become a healer began as a chemist researching protein chemistry and Kim-John-MD croppedpharmacology. After deciding to pursue a more clinical path, my medical training led me through family medicine, preventive medicine, public health, acupuncture, Tai Chi, and integrative medicine.
As a residential fellow at the University of Arizona, I was fortunate to train with Dr. Andrew Weil, a world-renowned leader in the field of integrative medicine. In addition, I studied with three teachers in acupuncture which helped me to first learn acupuncture energetics followed by specialization in neuroanatomical acupuncture and oncology acupuncture. What helped me the most was an opportunity to study under a master for two years after my acupuncture training while practicing acupuncture in an academic environment.
My first job in integrative medicine was as the Dean of Integrative Medicine at AIMC Berkeley, where we created a CEU program taught by many Chinese medicine practitioners. This experience gave me further exposure of utilizing Chinese medicine to the fullest.
My journey in integrative medicine resulted in first founding my own practice, Georgia Integrative Medicine, as well as serving as the medical director for integrative medicine at the Miami Cancer Institute and the University of Kansas Health System. My passion continues to be in assisting chronic pain patients, cancer patients, and lifestyle medicine patients by combining Western medicine effectively with Integrative medicine and Chinese medicine.
*The information provided here is for healthcare professional practitioners only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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Practitioners Corner: June Spotlight, Dr. Yueying Li, L.Ac.

Medicine has always been my passion since my youth. I discovered the amazing healing effects of Chinese Medicine from my own personal experiences of treating sports injuries and skin conditions. I have been practicing Chinese Medicine for 34 years, in China, YueYing Li (2)_croppedthe UK, and currently in Los Angeles California. I earned both my medical degree and Chinese Medical education and training in China in 1983. I then completed an advanced dermatology specialty training in China. In addition to my practice, I have always loved teaching Chinese Medicine.  I have taught for 34 years in China, the UK, and now in the U.S., as a faculty member at Yo San University for their master’s and doctoral programs.
I have always have been interested in working with classical formulas, such as those from Shang Han Lun, which have been around for over 1,800 years. There is good reason why these formulas have been used for such a long time – they work! I have been impressed with the efficacy, as well as versatility of the classical formulas such as Xiao Chai Hu Tang for treating various conditions. Using simple modifications practitioners can treat so many different cases with success. In order to effectively use the classical formulas, it is important for practitioners to thoroughly understand the herbs and formulas. I am excited to participate in this month’s webinars with TCMzone and share my experience and knowledge of the many uses of Xiao Chai Hu Tang, so practitioners can continue to deepen the knowledge and herbal clinical skills to help more patients.
For many years, along with my clinical practice, I have been helping graduates who have become practitioners with their questions regarding their clinical cases and how to use herbs and formulas. Often times, practitioners begin their practice right out of school and face difficulty with herbal prescriptions for certain cases. I have realized that there is a need for a support system for practitioners beyond CEU courses where they can get practical support for their cases and answers to their specific questions. Now, along with my team of experienced TCM practitioners, we are developing a professional web platform where our fellow practitioners can get support for their questions when needed. Excellent herbal products such as TCMzone and my specialty topical herbal products will also be available on the website. Watch for to launch Sept. 1, 2019.
I believe that a great practitioner should not only have a good education, knowledge, passion and compassion but also know how to choose the right formulas with quality ingredients that are effective and safe. We have been using TCMzone herbs in our practice for many years for their excellent quality as well as efficacy, safety and easy dosage modifications to create custom herb formulas.
I am grateful to have this special opportunity to share my knowledge and experience via the TCMzone June webinars. Together, we can grow as practitioners and continue to advance Chinese Medicine.
*The information provided here is for healthcare professional practitioners only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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Practitioners Corner: May Spotlight, Dr. Pamela Robbins

It is a privilege to discuss my thoughts on TCM and Acupuncture and relate some of my observations on the incorporation of its use in Western hospital settings. As a native of Singapore, I am a third-generation practitioner of Traditional Oriental Medicine. OnePam Robbins L.Ac.5 (2) (002) could say I was raised in the medicine.  Both my grandfathers were herbologists and TCM doctors.  While holding earlier business-related degrees from Brigham Young University/Hawaii, I earned my Cardiovascular degree from Santa Fe College in Gainesville, Florida and my Traditional Chinese Medicine Training from East-West College of Natural Medicine in Sarasota, Florida and with that received National Board certification with NCCAOM.  In the last 19 years of practicing both Eastern and Western medicine and running 3 private practices in Florida and Arizona, I have also worked in the Catherization Lab at Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg, Florida; and most recently as a member of the Integrative Medical Team of Banner M.D. Andersen Cancer Center in Gilbert, Arizona.

After cross-country moves from Florida to Alaska and then Arizona, my husband and I settled in Scottsdale/Mesa Arizona where I established 2 practices. It was an exciting opportunity in 2017; I was invited to join the Oncology Integrative Team at M.D. Andersen in Arizona.

TCM has come a long way from the 70’s to present day, from being illegal to practice to now integrating medical practices in some hospitals.  We are standing on the shoulders of many that have come before with their hard work and diligence. I do believe we still have a long way to go. There are different levels of acceptance of TCM practices in hospitals across the US and this varies from state to state. From research acupuncturist working with herbal studies and acupuncture protocols to establish evidence based science to hospitals who just wants acupuncture as an alternative modality because there is a demand. Overall, there is still a lack of understanding and doubt of TCM in the western medical world.

There is definitely an increase in awareness of and interest in the benefits of TCM through the years. This leads to conversations and demands from the healthcare system we presently have. With the participation of the insurance system, that awareness and interest heightens.  Hospitals particularly in the world of oncology are beginning to see the benefits of how acupuncture can help cancer patients alleviate the discomfort and pain that comes with post cancer treatments such as radiation and chemotherapy.  Many patients ask for complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) methods to enhance the efficacy of their cancer treatment, to boost their immune system, and to reduce side effects and increase tolerability of conventional cancer care.  Hence, it is refreshing to see the various forms of alternative care such as yoga, massage, and even essentials oils that facilitate that demand in those hospitals.  Acupuncture a well-established part of TCM and 1 of the oldest treatments, is one of the most frequently requested and offered treatments. In the area of nausea, neuropathy, xerostomia, cancer related fatigue, dsyphsia etc. has led to positive results.

Below are some thoughts that I have observed that might help speed up a true integration that will benefit future patients.  Namely: Increase the amount for evidence based studies on both acupuncture and herbal medicine, secondly, as practitioners we need to work together and bring a unifying effort to have Acupuncturists and Doctors of Traditional Chinese Medicines recognized as key health care providers in ALL 50 states. With this recognition, comes the respect our branch of health care deserves, and along with the compensation equal to other branches of medicine. Lastly, a strong encouragement to all Colleges of TCM to instill in all their graduates a higher level of respect for our selected practice of medicine – one that has now stood the test of time for over two thousand years.

Recently, I had the opportunity to travel to China with TCMZone and a team of TCM colleagues to receive further training on TCM.  I have seen integration of western medicine such as chemotherapy and radiation, and Chinese herbal infusion used on patients post cancer treatments. The results were phenomenal and I can only hope the day will come when our branch of medicine will take its place as equal part of the treatment protocol in our hospitals as well.

*The information provided here is for healthcare professional practitioners only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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TCMzone, a US Pioneer of Granule Herbs for Healthcare Practitioners

By Sherri Taylor, L.Ac.

TCMzone, LLC is a leading national herbal product company located in Tempe, Arizona that has raised the standard of Chinese Medicine.   TCMzone utilizes high quality contract manufacturers in Japan and China.  TCMzone’s specialty is modernizing Chinese Medicine by offering the ancient wisdom of Traditional Chinese Medicine and providing a modern day use of Chinese Herbals for practitioners to give to their patients.  One of the ways TCMzone does this is by providing herbal granule products to providers to take place of decocting raw herbs.  Herbal granules are easy and convenient to use.  You don’t need to spend time decocting herbs, you just need to add hot water to the granules which makes them convenient for “on the go” use.  Another important feature using herbal granules is that they are tested and standardized.  Each herbal product has a certificate of analysis that confirms a regulated product has reached its specifications in terms of amount of the herb and meets the standards for purity and safety.  The certificate of analysis ensures the quality of the herbal product and is the result of a series of tests done by the manufacturers.

The process of granulation includes sourcing the raw herb, cutting, weighing and mixing, extraction and separation, spray drying and powder mixture of herbal extract, granulation and packaging.   The finished granulation product has a 5:1 concentration ratio.  This means that one gram of granules is equal to 5 grams of raw herbs.  There a few exceptions to this rule, but most granules are in this dosage form. Granulation is a size enlargement process that converts small particles into physically stronger and larger particles.  There are two types of granulation, wet and dry.  Dry granulation consists of the mixture of powder being compressed with very little binders and fillers (excipients).  Dry granulation is primarily used in mainland China.  Wet granulation is the traditional pharmaceutical method of granulation and involves wet massing a powder mixture with a granulating liquid and includes more steps until the finished product.  Wet granulation tends to use more binders and fillers to help formation of granules. Granulation originated in Japan in the 1970’s and Taiwan in the 1980’s where wet granulation is used, the most traditional method.

TCMzone is committed to providing high quality herbs to providers so they can feel confident about the safety and efficacy of the product they are giving to their patients.  TCMzone manufacturers ensure sourcing authentic medicinal herbs as shown in the Chinese and Japanese Pharmacopoeia.  All TCMzone manufacturers provide rigorous testing of the herbal products for a certificate of analysis of the product and comply with pharmaceutical good manufacturing practices (GMP).  High quality tests are performed to ensure the quality, safety, and authentication of herbs.  These tests include: High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC), High Performance Thin Layer Chromatography (HPTLC), Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectometry, High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC), and Microscopy.

TCMzone offers both forms of granules.  Wet granulation herbs are mainly classical formulas from the Shang Han Lun that are the Honso brand.  Dry granulation herbs are from mainland China.  TCMzone single herbs are offered in daily-dose packets and 100 gram bottles for your single herbal dispensary.  Formulas are available in unit-dose packets, vegi-capsules and 100 gram bottles.

TCMzone is proud to be a US pioneer of granule herbs to provide the very best in herbal products to the Integrative Healthcare community.  Be a trusted source of herbal medicine for your patients.  Call us today with your questions and speak to our on-site herbal consultant.

*The information provided here is for healthcare professional practitioners only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.