Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Clinical Student Handbook

Supervised Clinical Internship – General Information

Overview of Educational Competencies

Interns develop a wide range of skills during supervised clinical training in preparation for professional clinical practice. The supervised teaching clinic provides students the opportunity to integrate and apply theoretical knowledge gained in the classroom, and to practice a variety of clinical skills with increasing levels of expertise.

Upon completion of the clinical internship series, all interns are expected to demonstrate competencies that have been gradually increased and are commensurate with their term of didactic education as stated in the intern’s clinical syllabi. NWHSU retains the right to change how the competencies are measured throughout the terms of a student’s education; in all cases these changes will be clearly articulated and distributed to students at the beginning of a new term, and updates included in future Clinic Handbooks.

The following educational competencies include, but are not limited to:

  • Interviewing/data collection skills
  • Documentation accuracy including responsible record keeping, protection of patient confidentiality
  • Diagnosis
    • correct use of diagnostic methods of traditional Chinese medicine; the four examinations
    • classification of data according to traditional Chinese medical pathological patterns;
    • differential diagnosis of TCM disease categories
  • Treatment:
    • ability to determine a treatment strategy based on TCM diagnosis;
    • development of a logical and coherent treatment, including strategic planning and prioritization in treatment;
    • ability to perform all Chinese medical clinical techniques and to use equipment safely and effectively in the delivery of treatment;
    • ability to assess effectiveness of treatments administered and modify as needed;
    • ability to determine when patients need emergency care, and when to make referrals to other healthcare practitioners;
    • ability to effectively utilize resources for referral and to communicate with other healthcare practitioners using commonly accepted medical terminology.

Clinical Internship Pre-requisites

Prior to clinical internship in T5, students will have completed the following classes and will have successfully passed any related examinations:

  1. All required theory and practical courses including training in Medical Asepsis and in Clean Needle Technique.
  2. Completion of 150 hours of observation, including
    1. Eight hours’ observation in UHS / DRC
    2. Eight hours’ observation in NHC-B
  3. CPR and Exposure Incident Trainings
  4. HIPAA Training
  5. NWHSU’s Pre-Clinic Workshop which includes passing scores for the Pre-Clinic Assessment (PCA)
  6. Passing the NWHSU Clinic Entrance Exam (PCE).

CM students will have completed additional coursework in herbal medicine including:

  1. Materia Medica 1
  2. Materia Medica 2
  3. Materia Medica 3

Clinic Entrance Exam:

The Pre- Clinic Entrance Exam (PCEE) is given during Trimester 4 and is administered as written challenge examination. Students must pass the Clinic Entrance Exam before entering clinical internship. This written exam consists of a complete review of basic theory, diagnosis, point location, Western medical screening, medical asepsis and a variety of case histories. A grade of 70% or higher is considered passing.

Pre-clinic Assessment Exam:

The Pre-Clinic Assessment Exam (PCA) is a practical exam offered before the completion of Pre- Clinic Workshop. Students will be required to demonstrate a full TCM assessment and intake on a live patient model. The student will then be required to provide a TCM diagnosis of the presenting condition. This exam is proctored by a faculty member who is a Licensed Acupuncturist and may be video-taped to provide post assessment feedback if necessary.

If a student does not pass the Pre-clinic assessment exam, they will be required to meet with class instructor(s) and the ACM Clinical Remediation Committee (CRC). The student will receive an “incomplete” for the class and be required to follow a Plan of Remediation created by the CRC and class instructors.