Title 5
Businesses and Professions

Chapter 37.2
The Practice of Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine

R.I. Gen. Laws § 5-37.2-2

§ 5-37.2-2. Definitions.

Unless the context otherwise requires, the words, phrases, and derivatives employed in this chapter have the meanings ascribed to them in this section:

(1) “Acupuncture” means the insertion of needles into the human body for the purpose of regulating physiology.

(2) “Acupuncture and Chinese medicine” means a form of health care, with a foundation in classical and modern Chinese medical concepts and theory, that employs Chinese medical diagnostic methods such as pulse, tongue, palpation, and observational diagnosis, as well as diagnostic techniques based on newer scientific models. “Acupuncture and Chinese medicine” includes acupuncture and adjunct therapies for the promotion, maintenance, or restoration of health, and the treatment, or prevention, of any ailment. The techniques and adjunct therapies of “Acupuncture and Chinese medicine” may include acupuncture, electro-acupuncture, laser acupuncture, moxibustion (heat therapy), cupping, TDP and infrared lamps, manual therapies such as gua sha, cupping, and tui na, corrective exercises such as Qi Gong, Chinese herbal medicine, dietary therapy, breathing exercises, and lifestyle change consultations.

(3) “Auricular acudetox,” also known as “5 Needle Protocol,” “5NP,” or “NADA protocol” means a standardized point auricular acupuncture protocol, consisting of five (5) points: Sympathetic, Shen Men, Liver, Kidney, and Lung, and developed by the National Acupuncture Detox Association (NADA) as an adjunct therapy for the treatment of addiction, substance use disorder, mental and behavioral health, trauma, and for relief in disaster settings.

(4) “Auricular acupuncture technician (AAT)” means a qualified individual, as defined in this section, with auricular acupuncture technician training based on the program developed by NADA, and is delivered by NADA, or its equivalent.

(5) “Chinese herbal medicine” means traditional combinations of raw, granular preparations of herbs to produce formulas from Chinese herbal literature, the modification of those traditional combinations, or the writing of new formulas to address individual symptom presentations, through addition, deletion, substitution, or change in dosages of ingredients and the dispensing of these herbal preparations to patients, including in pill, tablet, capsule, or liquid form.

(6) “Department” means the state department of health.

(7) “Doctor of acupuncture” means a person licensed under the provisions of this chapter to practice acupuncture and Chinese medicine.

(8) “Doctor of acupuncture and Chinese medicine” means a person licensed under the provisions of this chapter to practice acupuncture and Chinese medicine, and who has additional training, experience or certification to practice Chinese herbal medicine.

(9) “General supervision” means, but is not limited to, availability by telephone or other electronic means during business hours.

(10) “National Acupuncture Detoxification Association” or “NADA” means a not-for-profit organization that provides a certificate of acudetox training.

(11) “Qualified individual” means a licensed nurse, clinical social worker, mental health counselor, certified peer recovery specialist, or certified alcohol or chemical dependency professional, trained and certified in auricular acudetox. A qualified individual is required to be under general supervision of a licensed acupuncturist pursuant to this chapter.

History of Section.
P.L. 1978, ch. 287, § 1; P.L. 1985, ch. 181, art. 18, § 2; P.L. 2015, ch. 140, § 2; P.L. 2015, ch. 141, art. 20, § 7; P.L. 2015, ch. 150, § 2; P.L. 2021, ch. 62, § 2, effective June 25, 2021; P.L. 2021, ch. 68, § 2, effective June 25, 2021.