Registrants of the CTCMA
RE: The ATCMA’s Response to the Continued “One Association Campaign”
We, the British Columbia Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture Practitioners (ATCMA, atcma.org) represent Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) doctors, practitioners, herbalists and acupuncturists who practice in British Columbia. We provide our members with access to continuing education and competitive practice insurance. Since 1996, we have guided patients and promoted education about our profession in the communities we serve.
There have recently been emails circulating to CTCMA registrants claiming to be on behalf of a new “One Association” with the name “Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of British Columbia”. This so-called “One Association new name” is almost identical to the ATCMA’s legal name with the only difference being the order of the words in the name and this has caused much confusion among registrants.
- ATCMA’s legal name: British Columbia Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine & Acupuncture Practitioners
- Name included in the email: Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of British Columbia
- The proposed Chinese name is identical to the ATCMA’s Chinese name: 卑詩中醫針灸師公會.
The ATCMA’s legal name has been incorporated and registered as a non-profit society with the provincial government since 2015 and was formed by the amalgamation of the two largest BC Associations formerly QATCMA and TCMABC. It is unlikely that the proposed “One Association new name” can even legally be registered since it is too similar to the ATCMA’s already existing legal name and would cause too much confusion.
The ATCMA would like to provide clarity to registrants that may have been receiving repeated emails claiming to be on behalf of a new “One Association”. The ATCMA is neither affiliated with nor endorses the proposed creation of a new “One Association” because the ATCMA has already been serving the TCM community since 1996 in the following ways:
- 2008: The ATCMA (formerly as QATCMA) successfully lobbied the provincial government to include Acupuncture as MSP billable for premium assistance British Columbians.
- 2015: The ATCMA successfully lobbied the federal government to include Acupuncture as an GST-exempt health service.
- 2016 – 2018:
- The ATCMA successfully lobbied ICBC to include twelve pre-authorized Acupuncture sessions following a car accident and negotiated with the government to provide the highest reimbursement rates of any injury rehabilitation service provided. Currently ICBC pays $107 for an initial visit, and $90 for a follow-up visit.
- The ATCMA’s Vice President Dr. John Yang has been an integral part Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s TCM Program and is currently serving as the chair of the TCM program.
- The ATCMA negotiated reduced liability insurance rates for its members through BFL.
- The ATCMA successfully lobbied WorkSafeBC to increase the number of Acupuncture sessions from five to eight, and to remove the requirement for obtaining permission prior to initiating treatment of injured workers. The increase in fee reimbursement for Acupuncture services is an ongoing project of the ATCMA.
- The ATCMA successfully lobbied Manulife to increase its Acupuncture reimbursement fee from $80 to $90, and successfully lobbied Canada Life to increase its Acupuncture reimbursement fee from $90 to $100. The ATCMA continues to lobby insurers to broaden coverage and increase reimbursement fees.
- The ATCMA established a partnership with Sirius Benefits to offer a group extended health benefits plan.
- The ATCMA is engaged in ongoing dialogue with insurers on issues that have arisen with the COVID-19 pandemic, including telehealth, PPE costs and COVID exclusion clauses.
- The ATCMA created the “Recommended Safe Work Practices for TCM document” to provide guidance to registrants wanting to return to work once the province moved to Phase 2 of BC’s Restart Plan in response to COVID19. These recommendations were created in consultation with members and were presented in a virtual forum co-hosted with the CTCMA.
- The ATCMA is continually working to expand the scope of practice for our profession so that all registrants can access additional earning opportunities.
If there is any question as to which Association is working on behalf of the profession to provide tangible improvements to the prosperity of registrants, then you should look no further than the ATCMA.
We want to be very clear that we have reached out to every BC Association in the TCM industry over the past two years, but have been unable to form any meaningful relationships due to differences in priorities. The ATCMA prioritizes the prosperity of individual registrants and elevate the TCM profession to allow all registrants to be successful financially and this has always been on our focus. Now is not the time for new Associations, especially when the ATCMA has been successfully advocating on behalf of the profession for over two decades and will continue to make strides to keep TCM and Acupuncture as a premier profession in British Columbia.
If you are not already a member of the ATCMA we urge you to become a member to help us continue our fight for TCM and Acupuncture in BC. https://atcma.org
ATCMA Board of Directors