The Hawaii Physical Therapists introduced a bill in February that would allow "dry needling" to be added to their scope of practice in Hawaii. "Dry needling" also known as myofascial trigger point release is a form of acupuncture called ashi acupuncture in which the points are located on tender spots reported by the patient. PTs use solid filiform needles to perform dry needling. Every solid filiform needle that enters the US is a Class II medical device classified by the FDA as an acupuncture needle. Acupuncture is very effectiv for patients with pain and pain related to myofascial pain syndrome.
We, the acupuncturists of Hawaii, are strongly opposed to the inclusion of "dry needling" into the scope of practice for any practitioner that is not a licensed acupuncturist. This is a matter of public safety for the people of Hawaii.
In the statute of Physical Therapy 461J-2.5 HRS states:
461J-2.5 Prohibited practices.
A physical therapist shall not use invasive procedures. For purposes of this reason, an invasive procedure is the breaking or puncturing of a person's good skin integrity, for example, through surgery or injections.
Check out this fact sheet about acupuncture and dry needling from the American Society of Acupuncturists! Feel free to share it with colleagues, patients and friends.