news (6)

Are you, or you know someone who is ready to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of acupuncture education in the UK?

The British Acupuncture Accreditation Board is on the lookout for an enthusiastic and dynamic Educationalist to join our Board!

The Educationalist role exists to bring the current perspective of the higher education in the UK in discussion and decision making, and to question or challenge where necessary.

If you are interested or would like further information please contact the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your CV by Feb 18th, 2024.


We appreciate your interest in contributing to the future of acupuncture education.


For more information please download the role description.

Monday, 24 July 2023 10:24

BAAB Student Panel Video



Monday, 31 October 2022 14:51

Appointment Lead Accreditation Officer BAAB

PR statement

Mike Saks

Appointment of Lead Accreditation Officer of the British Acupuncture Accreditation Board

Nina Paterson has been appointed to succeed the long-serving Harriet Lansdown as Lead Accreditation Officer of the British Acupuncture Accreditation Board (BAAB) from early January 2023 onwards. As such she will be working closely with the rest of the BAAB team, including Vivien Shaw, the Accreditation Officer.

We are delighted to welcome Nina to our midst as she is an established leader in both the health and higher education community. She has a wealth of parallel experience to bring to the post, following the very positive and modernising lead accreditation role for the BAAB played by Harriet over the years.

Nina has for a number of years been the Education Lead and, more recently, Interim Assistant Director, Workforce and Education, at the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP), where she has worked since 2004. In these roles she has been responsible for programme recognition, advising the Quality Assurance and Enhancement Panel, linking with physiotherapy education providers to develop and deliver contemporary programmes fit for CSP recognition. She also represented the profession in dealing with high-level external stakeholders.

She has wide experience in managing committees, validations and quality assurance processes, having worked closely with over seventy higher education providers running pre- and post-registration programmes across the United Kingdom. She is a great believer in both a strategic approach and partnership working when implementing accreditation standards at national level – regularly liaising with other health and social care professional and regulatory bodies in the process.

Qualified to Master’s level, Nina has guest lectured on a number of different pre- and post-registration health programmes on subjects such as compassionate leadership and professional ethics. She is also an ILM, ICF and EMCC recognised executive and business performance coach working mostly with leaders within the higher education and health sector, as well as having very helpful experience of budgetary management commensurate with her new role.

Download PR statement here.

Monday, 31 October 2022 14:38

Appointment Chair of the BAAB

PR Statement

Jasmine Uddin, Vice Chair British Acupuncture Accreditation Board

Appointment of Chair of the British Acupuncture Accreditation Board


We are delighted to announce the appointment of Prof Raymond Playford as Chair of the British Acupuncture Accreditation Board. He will succeed the current Chair Prof Mike Saks on 1st January 2023.

Prof Playford brings a wealth of relevant knowledge in the areas of higher education, research and regulation with senior-level experience in public and corporate affairs, representing organisations in the public, commercial, regulatory and charitable sectors. In addition, he supports a holistic approach to healthcare issues, including the use of traditional/complementary medicine such as acupuncture.

Prof Playford brings a wealth of relevant knowledge in the areas of higher education, research and regulation with senior-level experience in public and corporate affairs, representing organisations in the public, commercial, regulatory and charitable sectors. In addition, he supports a holistic approach to healthcare issues, including the use of traditional/complementary medicine such as acupuncture.

He has an interest in good governance and quality control for health-related educational provision. He has extensive senior management experience in HEIs, reflected in the current positions he holds as a member of the Policy and Education Committee of the General Osteopathy Council and as Chairman of the Herbal Medicine Advisory Committee (HMAC), MHRA, which ensures the compliance of herbal products sold in the UK with EU/UK regulation on traditional herbal registration. Although acupuncture does not fall within the remit of the HMAC Committee, the HMAC benefits from a diverse membership, including TCM practitioners who are also acupuncturists. It is through interactions such as these that he is already well acquainted with some of the issues affecting the TCM and acupuncture profession.

As Chief Education and Training Specialist at Healthcare UK (UKTI, DoH, and NHS) he was successful in facilitating multi-million GBP educational/training international contracts on behalf of hospitals, FEIs and HEIs, thus demonstrating his ability to influence stakeholders across businesses and government. His management experience in HEIs includes previously being Deputy Vice Chancellor/Vice Principal at Plymouth University and at Queen Mary, University of London (with a focus on health and NHS-related matters), and Head of Gastroenterology, Hammersmith Hospital, Imperial College. He is also past President of the Association of Physicians of Great Britain and Ireland and Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences.Prof Playford is currently Professor of Molecular Medicine at the University of West London, Adjunct Professor at the School of Medicine, University College, Cork, and a visiting consultant gastroenterologist at St Georges Hospital in London.

Download PR statement here.

Held on June 8th 2022 at the University of Westminster, London

Introduction and Aims

This event brought together a range of leading experts to discuss the future for acupuncture in the UK with a focus on education and training.

Acupuncture is increasingly accepted as a valid and effective healthcare intervention, and has been found to be safe, cost effective and popular with patients. Different professional groups and opposing schools of thought have resulted in a wide variation in the standards of training and education for acupuncturists and health professionals delivering acupuncture in the UK. Additionally, there are differences in approach, such as those between traditional and western medical acupuncture. This makes it challenging to provide a common quality standard for the profession which can meet patients’ needs in the developing healthcare landscape. This event aims to explore how a common quality standard for acupuncture might be achieved and enhanced through increased mutual understanding; and reconcile our differences through developing common shared packages with different principles.

Download or read the full report here: Quality Standards Report 2022

BAAB letter: a clarification

The British Acupuncture Accreditation Board (BAAB) recently sent the letter below to all students, outlining what they are doing to help you continue on your course.

We would like to make a correction to the paragraph third from the end:  'Finally, you will be aware that BAcC members are not able to practise at the moment because of the risk they may carry of passing on the Covid-19 virus to their patients.'

In fact, some members are choosing to work remotely, and we have been able to offer them a cheaper temporary category of ‘short-term insured’ membership.

Most BAcC members have chosen to close their practices for the time being, and we have transferred them to 'non-practising' membership, saving them considerable expense whilst they cannot see their patients in clinic.

Some members have even chosen to continue paying their full subscription, despite the limits on practice, as a gesture of support for the continuing work of the BAcC. Operating with a reduced staff team all working from home, we continue regular communications to members, as well as lobbying on behalf of acupuncturists with the government and maintaining our accredited position with the Professional Standards Authority (PSA).


Dear Student,

On behalf of the British Acupuncture Accreditation Board (BAAB), we are writing today to reassure you that we are doing all we can to ensure that you will be able to continue progressing through your course and achieve your goal of becoming an acupuncturist.

We appreciate the huge changes you have had to make in the way you study and take your assessments, and how much you will be missing being at your college/university, seeing patients, friends and teachers and maintaining your clinical practice or observation. Many of you will be facing the difficulties of managing housebound children, the responsibilities of being key workers, and the health of your friends and families, alongside keeping up with your studies. Inevitably, there will be worries about money, and the uncertain future the pandemic has brought to our lives.

In the short term, along with universities, schools and other education providers, we all have to be flexible about what is possible and reasonable during these weeks and months. Obviously, for you, this has meant that all of your teaching, learning and assessment has been moved online. This can be a big change, and we are very grateful to you and to the staff of the accredited course providers, who have worked tirelessly over recent weeks to ensure your education is able to continue during the COVID-19 emergency. It has involved enormous skill and effort on their part to re-schedule teaching and put activities online.    

We want to let you know that the BAAB has agreed that, while the emergency continues, your course provider can change arrangements for teaching, assessment, and other aspects of your course, provided that the basic standards for accreditation are met. We have asked them to inform us of the changes, so we can assure this. Some have been in direct contact with us about their arrangements, and all course providers will let us know in due course about the re-arrangements they have made.

Significantly, practical skills teaching and clinical practice and observation are not possible at the moment, and will inevitably have to be undertaken outside of your expected timetable, or taken in extra time in your following years. As you will see below, the BAAB and the BAcC has been able to make special arrangements about clinical practice requirements for students who are graduating this year. For those of you currently at levels 4 and 5, you may think that the current situation will have a knock-on effect for you as well. Hopefully, you will have caught up by then, but if it’s necessary we will discuss with BAcC whether similar arrangements can be put in place for those of you due to graduate in 2021. 

As the outcomes of the present crisis becomes clearer over the next few months, we will be able to talk with you, the course providers, our BAAB colleagues and the BAcC to make sure that you are given every opportunity to complete your course in a meaningful, flexible and effective way which meets the necessary standards.

As the accrediting body, the BAAB’s responsibility is to make sure that every graduate meets the requirements in the BAcC Standards of Education and Training for Acupuncture (SETA), which you can find on the BAAB website. The key issue for us, is to balance a flexible response to the current situation, whilst making sure that the standards are met by every graduating student for the next few years. Getting this balance right achieves two things. Firstly, that we can assure the BAcC that every graduate from an accredited college has done everything they need to rightly gain membership. Secondly, to ensure that you have the confidence that your training and education is every bit as good as any other BAcC member. This is our challenge, and we are ready and able to meet it.

Those of you approaching graduation in the coming months are naturally concerned that it will be impossible to complete the required 400 clinical hours by your expected date of graduation. The BAcC has agreed, exceptionally, that graduating students who have completed all other course requirements may be granted provisional registration for four months following graduation, with the following conditions:

  • Course providers must be confident any graduating students applying for provisional membership are able to practice safely.
  • Course providers must continue to log these students’ clinical hours, in the expectation that by the end of this four-month period, the full 400 hours will have been completed. 
  • Course providers may utilise the final 40 hours of clinical practice via ‘indirect supervision’, as long as the guidelines in the BAAB Accreditation Handbook are fully met.
  • Graduating students applying for this provisional BAcC membership are provided with documents to submit to the BAcC evidencing:
  • the number of clinical hours already completed
  • the plans for completing any remaining hours

We are confident that the changes we and your course providers have made and will continue to make will give you the best possible chance of fulfilling your goal of becoming a successful practicing acupuncturist, despite all the current obstacles. We are keeping the situation under review and will take further action as necessary.

Finally, you will be aware that BAcC members are not able to practice at the moment because of the risk they may carry of passing on the Covid 19 virus to their patients. This is the subject of huge regret, as we know that acupuncturists could contribute very positively to the health of their patients. It also leaves members without an income, and new graduates with huge challenges in setting up their new practices. The BAcC has quite rightly transferred all its members to non-practicing status, as a result of their advice. This is a great help to members, by substantially reducing their membership fees. Naturally, this creates a significant loss of income to the professional body, so many members of staff have been furloughed. This includes Natalie Johnson, the Admissions & Student Membership Officer, so if you have trouble getting through to her, this may be why. Other staff are taking over her responsibilities, and they are all working very hard to cover everything, but there may be delays in responding to you at this time.

Meanwhile, the BAcC are preparing for the acupuncture profession to return to practice once the immediate crisis is over. They are researching the evidence from China to explore claims that TCM may be able to reduce the effects of the virus; preparing promotions for the potential that more people will be interested in using acupuncture to improve their health and their immunity; and lobbying for acupuncture to be accepted as a valid healthcare option.

Despite all the current difficulties, becoming a practicing acupuncturist is a wonderful career choice. Your course provider, supported by the BAAB, is doing everything they can to help you to succeed in your chosen career. The BAcC is responding appropriately to the situation and will be there to support you, both as a student, and as a professional when you graduate. We are all committed to you and doing our very best to make sure you achieve what you set out to do in becoming a professional acupuncturist and a member of the BAcC.

Best wishes,

Professor Mike Saks, Chair, BAAB

Harriet Lansdown, Lead Accreditation Officer, BAAB

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