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Chen earns highest honor for medical acupuncture



Dr. Howard Chen, M.D.

Howard Chen, M.D., board certified in both internal medicine and medical acupuncture, of Renown Health was recently elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Medical Acupuncture (FAAMA), which is the highest honor that the Academy can give to a member. The designation was bestowed at the academy’s annual symposium this past April.

The designation is reserved for academy members who have earned status as DABMA (Diplomat, American Board of Medical Acupuncture), have the highest moral, ethical and professional standing in the community in which they practice, have direct publication or teaching experience training medical professionals in acupuncture, and have at least five years of medical acupuncture experience.  All candidates for Fellowship must be approved by the voting membership of the American Academy of Medical Acupuncture.

To achieve the distinction of DABMA, a physician must have met all qualifications, passed the American Board of Medical Acupuncture (ABMA) examination and had the application approved. Doctors who meet these requirements are granted the designation DABMA. This program was implemented by ABMA in 2000.

Licensed physicians who have completed an organized primary acupuncture course of at least 200 hours and have 300 or more total hours of training are eligible to make application to ABMA to sit for the examination. Thus, physicians may sit for the exam soon after their training, or they may wait, depending on their preference.

The other components include two years of practice after the initial training program with at least 500 cases, and three professional physician references. The affidavit of experience and references can be submitted after they are completed. Applicants do not attest to completion of two years of practice until they have actually completed the time after their training.

There is also a recertification process for DABMA to ensure ongoing training that involves 150 hours of continuing acupuncture education during a 10-year period, which is reported annually.

The AAMA was organized to promote the integration of concepts from traditional and modern forms of acupuncture with Western medical training and thereby synthesize a more comprehensive approach to health care.

The Academy was founded in 1987 by a group of physicians who were graduates of the Medical Acupuncture for Physicians training programs sponsored by University Extension, UCLA School of Medicine. The AAMA is the sole physician-only professional acupuncture society in North America, accepting members from a diversity of training backgrounds. Physician members represent all of the disciplines of medical acupuncture currently practiced in the United States and Canada.


Membership requirements for the Academy have been established in accordance with the training guidelines created by the World Federation of Acupuncture-Moxibustion Societies. The Academy represents the highest standards of training and proficiency among physicians practicing acupuncture in North America.


To find a medical acupuncturist in your area, visit AAMA’s website: www.medicalacupuncture.org.


For more information about AAMA, contact Executive Administrator C. James Dowden (310/364-0193, [email protected]) or visit the Academy’s website (www.medicalacupuncture.org).

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