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Joint Statement – 22 Oct 2020

Dear Members,

We are writing to you today with positive news.

After consultation with a Barrister-at-Law and with due consideration to these findings, it is deemed appropriate for us to consider our profession as an “Essential service” for the purpose of the governments revised ‘Essential services’ List published 14th October.

The Barrister drew this conclusion from reviewing legislation such as the Health and Social Care Professionals Act 2005 and Employment Permits Regulations 2014 and the governments ‘Essential Services list’.

The Barrister concluded that on the basis of our inclusion as ‘Health Associate Professions’ in Employment Permits Regulations 2014 and with consideration of our training and expertise, it is reasonable to consider delivery of acupuncture under ‘primary care and general and specialist medical practice activities’ and or ‘health services’.  He stated in his conclusion that:

“In the circumstances, it appears that acupuncture qualifies as both a specialist medical practice and a health service. As such, it can be deemed an essential service.”

“Crucially, where a business does fall to be defined as an essential service, it must provide its services in accordance with Covid-19 requirements and guidance.”

Therefore it is essential that members strictly comply with all Covid-19 requirements and guidance as has been previously outlined. We invite our members to review their current practises and ensure they are in adherence with public health guidelines.

We have contacted Balen’s Insurance on behalf of our members to inform them of the above.

We continue to lobby government to progress our concerns in relation to our explicit inclusion in the ‘Essential services’ list and continue our efforts to engage government for the regulation of our profession in Ireland.

Thank you for your patience over the last week, we appreciate it was difficult time for our members.

Stay safe

Shane McMunn                                                                                                Juliane Colleran

Chair AFPA                                                                                                          Chair ACI

Kind regards,

Mags O’ Brien,


Acupuncture Council of Ireland

The Willows,



Co. Limerick

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