Choose a Practitioner of Traditional Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine in the same way you choose a western doctor; carefully. Your practitioner will need as much or more of your personal information as a western doctor. A Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner performs invasive procedures and prescribes substances to take into your body. From your perspective, the necessary qualifications for either position are similar. The first questions to ask are similar to those you would ask of other professionals. Where did you go to school?
With whom did you apprentice and for how long? Are you licensed or national board certified? Do you carry malpractice insurance? You may need to ask specifically how much education and practice the practitioner has in the treatment methods and disease conditions that are important to you..
For instance, not all acupuncturists have formally studied herbal medicine. Formal study consists of school class hours and apprenticeships, both of which include clinical experience. Correspondence courses do not. A three day continuing education seminar on Chinese herbal medicine is probably sufficient for a practitioner with an apprenticeship or sufficient school class hours but not for someone with no knowledge base in herbal medicine. Also, if the acupuncturist has studied in Asia ask how long the course was and what the curriculum was. In addition to the full educational curriculum in the traditional medical colleges, many three to six week training programs are offered in China, Taiwan, Korea and Japan. However, there are many false credentials available for the right price as well. Ask directly the practitioner directly about their background. You have the right to know.