The Middle Way Model Meets Community Acupuncture the Lisa Rohleder Interview

Please Note! Due to the high volume of irritating spam and slow-down of participation here, we are no longer accepting new comments, questions, or subjects on this Forum. We are keeping all the subjects and comments for review as there is a lot of good stuff here relating to practice-building subjects. So, dig deep! Thanks to everyone who participated here but it is time to move on to bigger projects educating the public about acupuncture! Matt Bauer

02-Aug-2013 07:02 AM

Matthew Bauer

Posts: 211

I recently conducted an interview with Lisa Rohleder, co-founder of the Community Acupuncture model/movement that can be found here on my Making Acupuncture Pay website:

  This was the first in what I hope to make into a series of interviews with notable people in the Acupuncture/Chinese medicine field. It was great to have Lisa as my first guest both because I believe the Community Acupuncture movement is the most important new development in the acupuncture profession in the West in many years and also because it was Lisa who first put the idea in my head that I needed to work at sharing my practice knowledge and experience with struggling acupuncturist.

My goal in this interview was to highlight the remarkable achievements that have been taking place in the Community Acupuncture movement in the last 7 years, give some brief history of how Lisa and her partner Skip founded this style of practice, and then address what I believe are the main clinical misunderstandings people tend to have about performing Community Acupuncture. If you have ever thought about doing Community Acupuncture but were unsure or even intimidated by the idea, I encourage you to listen to this interview. You can then also check-out their organization’s website at , especially their FAQ page and their store where you can find some great books including two written principally by Lisa. Lisa is clearly one of the best writers in our profession with an ability to capture complex concepts and emotions in simple language.  

People may wonder why I so enthusiastically support Community Acupuncture while also teaching a different model. That is because I believe no one model is best for everyone. Like Lisa and the Community Acupuncture folks, I am committed to helping acupuncturists make a living while also making acupuncture affordable and available to as many people as possible. What I teach differs from the Community Acupuncture model in that I don’t teach about treating patients in a group setting or with a sliding scale. TheMiddle Way model is built around a moderate patient volume (8-10 a day) and moderate pricing structure ($40-60 per treatment) but with a patient’s “low average out-of-pocket cost” by employing means such as (but not limited to) accepting insurance. It also hinges on squeezing the most benefit out of the least number of treatments without under-treating. Please see my Forum thread for more detailed discussion on this model:

My interview with Lisa is the start of another phase of the work I am trying to do providing acupuncturists a support system and lots of useful information at little or no cost. This phase involves inviting others to share their knowledge and expand on what I am able to teach. Lisa is a friend and was gracious in sharing her time with me for this venture. I will continue to invite others with important experience to share here also. The more who visit my Making Acupuncture Pay site and Facebook page, dialog there, and share these resources with their friends and colleagues, the more I will be able to attract others with valuable knowledge and invest in supplying more tangible resources.

This is all about trying to help acupuncturists establish sustainable careers so that they can help thousands while making a living. Other than my books, the only “products” I will be selling are continuing education credits (California CEU’s and NCCAOM PDA’s) and even those will have all the course materials for free reading/downloading. Here is the link to that page:

 I also encourage anyone to freely share my materials with others (not for resale of course and with appropriate copy write credit given). I am committed to investing most of what I make from these sales toward developing more free resources. I have long believed that with some creative efforts, you could offer acupuncturists valuable support for little or no direct cost but this can only happen if enough people want it to happen by supporting these types of initial efforts. I always teach that building a practice takes a good plan and then time to let things grow exponentially especially surviving the first few critical years. The same goes with my efforts to build a support system for acupuncturist. I feel things are beginning to pick-up steam and look forward to growing these resources over the next year to see how far things may go. Thanks for the support you all have given me so far and let’s keep it going and growing!