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High volume acupuncture clinic (HVAC) for chronic knee pain – audit of a possible model for delivery of acupuncture in the National Health Service
  1. Saul Berkovitz, consultant physician,
  2. Mike Cummings, honorary clinical specialist,
  3. Chris Perrin, nurse manager,
  4. Rieko Ito, nurse practitioner
  1. Royal London, Homeopathic Hospital University College London Hospitals NHS Trust London, UK
  1. saul.berkovitz{at}


Recent research has established the efficacy, effectiveness and cost effectiveness of acupuncture for some forms of chronic musculoskeletal pain. However, there are practical problems with delivery which currently prevent its large scale implementation in the National Health Service. We have developed a delivery model at our hospital, a ‘high volume’ acupuncture clinic (HVAC) in which patients are treated in a group setting for single conditions using standardised or semi-standardised electroacupuncture protocols by practitioners with basic training. We discuss our experiences using this model for chronic knee pain and present an outcome audit for the first 77 patients, demonstrating satisfactory initial (eight week) clinical results. Longer term (one year) data are currently being collected and the model should next be tested in primary care to confirm its feasibility.

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