This section provides answers to common questions that people have about Acupuncture, for other Clinical Specialisms that our affiliates provide, please see the Specialisms section.

Treatments, uses and suitability

Acupuncture needles are very fine and the sensation is usually mild and lasts only for a moment. You may not feel some of the needles at all.
A set of between four and six sessions will allow you and us to assess together the outcomes and expectations of acupuncture for you. After this, sessions will be more spaced out appropriately. Many patients who are experiencing symptomatic relief decide to have two or three treatments a year for a "top up" or ‘maintenance’.
Acupuncture is accessed by a large number of people from all backgrounds, and we have seen over 1600 individual patients at Shaftesbury Clinic since 2008, for thousands of acupuncture sessions, to patients presenting with a full range of conditions, concerns and symptoms. We keep an evidence-based Condition Resources page, where we provide references and information about conditions popularly requested for acupuncture. On those pages we explain the studies, how to interpret them and also provide links to evidence based British Acupuncture Council factsheets on the condition. Regardless of the condition and symptoms you are presenting with, you may also experience an number of wellbeing effects. For a chat with an acupuncturist about your own case, what their experience in this area is and an idea of what you may be able to expect, you can book a free 20 minute consultation or telephone call by appointment.

Qualifications, standards and regulations

Philip Rose-Neil, Louise England and Darren Haines each qualified with Licentiates in Acupuncture after three years’ degree level training. They are individually licenced by Bedford Borough Council for the practise of acupuncture, as are the rooms from which they practise, which have been duly inspected. They are fellows or members of the British Acupuncture Council and are therefore bound by their codes of safety and ethics. They each carry full professional indemnity, and public liability insurance cover. Both Louise and Philip have served on executive boards of the British Acupuncture Council, with Philip being a former chair of the organisation.
Unfortunately, recent retrictions mean that you now have to wait 6 months after a course of acupunture before donating blood again.
Acupuncture is complementary, and can be used alongside treatment you receive from your GP or hospital doctors, without interfering with other drug or treatment you are receiving. However, we advise that you do tell your GP (and consultant / midwife / obstetrician where applicable) that you are using it, so they can be fully informed.

Ethics and codes of conduct

Acupuncture is based on the ancient Chinese people’s views of the body and the rhythms of nature, in this sense it is more of a philosophy and it is not based on religious or spiritual beliefs. Therefore using acupuncture is very unlikely to conflict with your own personal religious beliefs. If you are uncertain, we advise speaking with your faith leader, and asking us any questions you may have.

Insurance plans and payments and gift vouchers

If you have a healthcare plan or private health insurance, it may reimburse you the cost, or part of the cost of acupuncture as long as the practitioner is a member of the British Acupuncture Council (BAcC): Philip and Louise are BAcC members. The following healthcare companies and cash plans reimburse for acupuncture: This list was last updated July 2021, and policies can change, so please check with your provider. Other insurers may also cover acupuncture with us, so if yours does not appear below, contact them directly to find out. Note you may need a GP/consultant referral for some schemes. Aviva // AXA PPP Healthcare // Benenden Health // Birmingham Hospital Saturday Fund (BHSF) // Cash4Health & BHSF // BUPA (Policy Specific) // CS Healthcare // Engage Mutual Assurance // Exeter Family Friendly // General & Medical Healthcare // Healthshield // HSF // Medicash // National Friendly // Pru Health (Now Vitality Health) // Sovereign Health // Simply Health // Westfield // WHA // WHCA // WPA // Insurance companies: policies underwritten by other companies // Insurety // Saga // Secure Health

BAcC list of insurers and further information: BAcC Insurers and HealthCare Plans Information

We accept cash, cheques, and debit and credit cards.
Yes, contact us for details if you require vouchers, for example for a gift.