Chinese Acupuncture Research Institution

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Dr Ong Seh Hong's speech at the Singapore "Acupuncture Practical Technology"  seminar


Ong Seh Hong: The Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) community should continue to strive towards constantly innovating research for world-recognised TCM methods. The recently retired Member of Parliament Dr Ong Seh Hong was invited to attend an acupuncture seminar the day before, and at his speech, he said that even though TCM has its unique set of scientific diagnosis methods, it should continue to accept new challenges and strive towards constantly innovating research for world-recognised TCM methods .

Nearly 400 local TCM practitioners, acupuncturists, TCM associations and representatives attended the Singapore "Acupuncture Practical Technology"  seminar  the day before yesterday, to learn acupuncture experts from China, Hong Kong and Singapore introduce some of the ancient and unique forms of acupuncture, such as tongue, ear and fire acupuncture, and grain moxibustion, as well as the latest acupuncture developments, such as acupoint buried thread therapy.

The Singapore Chinese Physicians' Association Chairman Dr Wong Chin Nai said, this seminar's aim was to make it clear that acupuncture is not a placebo. He says, at present, there are 160 countries in the world that use acupuncture as a form of therapy, and the World Health Organization (WHO) has been actively promoting acupuncture, and since 1997, it has confirmed that 43 kinds of human diseases can be treated effectively by acupuncture. Dr Ong Seh Hong, who was invited to host the opening ceremony, expressed that TCM, especially acupuncture can withstand challenges and testing, and used the analogy that "real gold does not fear the red hot coals" to describe ancient TCM.

Dr Ong Seh Hong said, TCM, regardless of Chinese herbs, acupuncture or TCM therapy, has treated countless patients in the course of thousands of years, and hence it has withstood the test of time and definitely has its proven benefits and effects. However, with the development of technology, he feels that TCM should keep evolving, and even though TCM has its own set of diagnosis principles, it should still continue to accept new challenges and strive towards constantly innovating research for world-recognised TCM methods . He explained, when reading scientific reports, one should remain objective. Whether it is TCM or Western medicine, when a drug is being tested, it has the possibility of having a placebo effect. For example, in Western medicine, sometimes a drug or treatment may show significant results in the first study, and in a second study show no results. This is very common.

He said, "So we need to take an objective standpoint when approaching such articles. You may say this drug is effective, but do not base it solely on one report. Instead, look at the complete picture, and see if the majority of people agree that it is effective before you decide. By taking this approach, you can avoid an overreaction to such problems." Dr Ong Seh Hong feels that everyone should study the different development stages of Western medicine carefully, and understand and differentiate its benefits and shortcomings, and thereby, on the basis of continuing the tradition, create a brand new era of medicine, and from an equal platform, integrate Eastern and Western medicine and finally form an international and new medical system that will last for hundreds of generations. He pointed out, everyone's main aim is the same, which is to get rid of the old and useless and retain the effective portions, and at the same time, demonstrate newer, more effective treatment methods, and even treat new diseases.

As for the miscommunication between TCM and Western medicine, he feels that this problem can be solved by increased exchanges and interaction between the two groups. He feels that if the best of TCM and Western medicine can be combined, perhaps this will allow patients to receive the fastest and most effective treatments that also have the least side effects. "Acupuncture Practical Technology Symposium" is the World Acupuncture Federation's first stop in the "Global Tour of Acupuncture", and is organised by the SCPA and Chung Hwa Acupuncture Research Institute and hosted by the the World Acupuncture Federation.