Acupuncture as an Independent System of Medicine in India

Published: 08th November 2014 10:00 PM  |   Last Updated: 08th November 2014 01:40 PM   |  A+A-

Acupuncture.jpgThe aim of the Government of India, under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is to provide reasonable healthcare to its entire population. Our own traditional methods like Ayurveda, Unani, Yoga and Naturopathy have been doing the same since time immemorial. Acupuncture is another traditional healing method from China which has been proven to be very efficacious and cost effective. I started practising Acupuncture after completing my MBBS in 1982 and now I am a full time practitioner of Medical Acupuncture since the last 32 years.

The process of getting Acupuncture recognised as an independent system of medicine started by me along with a few of my learned colleagues from all over the country with the formation of ‘National Coordination Committee of Acupuncture’ under my chairmanship.  This committee gave its first representation to Mr Dinesh Triwedi (State Health Minister, government of India) on 20th December, 2009.  The matter was then referred to ICMR, which requested us to submit relevant literature from various research journals on Acupuncture; which was submitted on 13th October 2010.  After continuous correspondence with the department concerned, the Department of Health Research, government of India, drafted a bill entitled ‘Recognition of New System of Medicine’, which has been cleared by the Health Ministry and is now with the cabinet.

Another interesting development has been the MoU signed between the Department of AYUSH and the Chinese government for promoting Acupuncture in India vis-a-vis yoga and naturopathy in China. This MoU is valid for a period of five years from January 14, 2013 onwards. However, there has been no forward movement in this regard. It will be in the best interest of both the countries to go ahead and promote their own traditional methods of healing and thus benefit millions of people.

The government of India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, through its order dated November 25, 2003, recognised acupuncture as a ‘mode of therapy’ to be practiced only by qualified medical practitioner of any of five systems of Medicine (Allopathy, Homeopathy, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani and  Ayurveda) to which Dentistry has been included in 2014.  However, there is no regulatory council for such practitioners and hence quackery is on the rise. It is pertinent here that the government takes immediate steps to form an ‘Acupuncture Council’ and publish a list of such qualified practitioners all over the country to save the common man from quacks.

Recognition of Acupuncture as an independent system of medicine will clear the road for setting up of proper courses in our country for treating the science. The cooperation agreement signed between India and China can be used to good effect by utilising the knowledge of the Chinese experts in sharing their experiences and teaching doctors in Indiap.


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