What is 'Community Acupuncture'
Bristol Community Acupuncture is a new community acupuncture clinic in Bristol. Community acupuncture clinics are a way of providing acupuncture but at a fraction of the cost of one-on-one sessions. The most common format for an acupuncture session in the UK is a 'one-on-one' session. Based on the type of sessions developed by councellors and psychotherapists, the patient will typically be alone with the practitioner in the treatment room for the whole session. These sessions can be relatively costly, which means that people on lower incomes may struggle to afford regular sessions. Over the last couple of decades, 'Community Acupuncture' or 'Affordable Acupuncture' clinics have become more and more common in the UK. These clinics are designed to be more affordable than the typical acupuncture treatment, and are usually around a half to the third of a 'one-on-one' acupuncture session. Community acpuncture clinics are ususally set up in a large room, with several treatment couches or reclining chairs for the acupuncture treatments to take place. Practitioners will take the details of the patient, then insert the needles, moving on to another patient in the 20-30 minutes while the first person relaxes on the couch and the needles do their work. This means that more than one person can be seen at a time, and treatments can be carried out more efficiently without losing any of the treatment quality. Community acupuncture clinics often use a 'sliding scale' price system. With this system, you chose how much you feel you can afford from the scale. This means that people are free to choose the lowest end of the scale, if they need more frequent treatments, for example, but can also pay a bit more if they are able, which helps support the clinic and helps it to cover all its operating costs. There have been several low cost acupuncture clinics in Bristol over the years, but, for various reasons, most of these Bristol community acupuncture clinics no longer operate. We're not sure if there are currently any community acupuncture clinics in Bristol, but we think we may be the only one! The sliding scale at Bristol Community Acupuncture is from £25 to £45. Both Ian and Andrew have extensive experience of running and working in community acupunture settings. Ian has worked in community acupuncture clinics since 2015, and Andrew set up 'Community Spirit Affordable Acupuncture' in Wimbledon in 2009 (now closed) and set up and runs Bright Room Community Acupuncture in Stoke Newington, London, which has been in operation since 2012. We've seen how effective and accessible community acupuncture clinics can be, and are excited to be opening Bristol Community Acupuncture in April 2022. We hope to see you there soon!