torsdag 21 april 2011

Multi-bed acupuncture in China and in the West

There is a movement in the West called multi-bed acupuncture. Most clinics the past few years have been and still are only one bed, one patient at a time. Multi-bed clinics take their view from the chinese set-up, which usually is anywhere from 2-10 patients treated at the same time. There are thin screens between the beds for privacy, but it´s a more communal experience and the effect is much more positive in treating the local community as a whole rather than single individuals in it.

People hear how other people´s treatments are going, they talk about their problems, they get support and share their experiences and a stronger social network is put in place. Purely energetically, simultaneous treatments of several patientes at the same time treats the local field of energy and intent in the community much stronger than if you treat one person only. The aid-organisation Acupuncturists Without Borders have made this a specific point when treating traumatized and destroyed communities in disaster zones and after natural disasters. You can read more about it here: http://www.acuwithoutborders.org/.

The multi-bed acupuncture project in the West often weaves together with something called community acupuncture too. Acupuncturists who work with this charge a sliding scale, where the client can decide themselves how much they can afford to pay. In London, that scale is usually between 20-50 pounds, but there are clinics in England who go as low as 15 pounds as well. Qualified acupuncture is expensive in the West since it is still kept outside the NHS-system. This means that people who really need it but have low income rarely can get access to treatments. The community acupuncture movement wants to change this. A clinic still has to go around, and the acupuncturist has to make a living, but with this, we can offer help that reaches those who really need treatments but who think they´re unavailable due to financial constraints.

Multi-bed acupuncture is the standard treatment in China, and has been, probably for millenia. These days, in a more capitalist China, there are private clinics where clients pay more money and have private rooms with only one doctor. In some treatments this might be necessary, but quite often the patient will actually gain more from being treated in a multi-bed clinic. In this day and age, we so easily glide more apart, human beings being small islands in an Internet sea, drifting gently but surely away from each other. The multi-bed treatments and community acupuncture tell us that we are all human, all have problems, and we can see the heart of people when they heal, just like in ourselves.

Daniel Skyle © 2011