How to Set Up an Acupuncture Practice in California

Malpractice Insurance - Top 3

MIEC - This is ideal for those who work in fertility and pregnancy as it has the most comprehensive and flexible coverage for women’s health. I think this is the most used malpractice option in California. Covers professional liability with herbal medicine.

AAC - This is ideal for those who use direct moxibustion in their practice as many other plans do not cover it. It is NOT ideal for those that treat pregnant women as it’s very strict as to how you can treat someone who is pregnant and/or in labor. Covers professional liability with herbal medicine.

CM&F - Similar to MIEC just not as widely used it seems.

General Liability Insurance

My go-to for all types of liability insurance (general liability, product liability, etc.) is HISCOX because it’s easy, affordable, and has an A+ rating which many landlords will require for your brick & mortar space. That said, all of the malpractice insurance providers listed above offer a general liability add-on, which might be easiest when you're first starting out.

Business License

It’s easy enough to google this and find out what is needed to get a business license in your county/city. Be careful as some will charge an extra fee related to your gross sales at the end of the year so be sure to save up for that. If you’re running a remote telehealth business it is unlikely that you will need a business license, but be sure to stay current on the laws as all that might change. 

Sales & Use Permit

If you do not have inventory that you sell but rather go through 3rd party providers then you do not need this. If you sell inventory that you have in stock, legally you need a sales and use permit if you’re selling directly to patients under your care even though some people will tell you there is a gray area on whether you would need this or not - it took hours of research through the CDTFA website for me to determine that you 100% clearly need one. If you have a retail shop or sell retail online there is no gray area you will definitely need to apply for a Sales & Use Permit through the CDTFA website.

Software Solutions

Cheap & Dirty (& Compliant): Google Suite (with signed BAA) + Strikingly + Appointlet + Payment Processor

  • Cost: $6/month + credit card fees
  • What is covered: EHR (Google Docs), Intake Forms (Google Forms), Simple website (Strikingly), Booking Site (Appointlet), Payment Processor (Square/Wave/Novo), HIPAA compliant Video Conferencing (Google Meet)
  • Pros: Cheap and scalable as a solo practitioner
  • Cons: You have to organize a workflow on your own in terms of booking, intake forms and record keeping, which can be super cumbersome to establish and maintain. Not suitable for larger clinics.

My Recommendation: Jane App + Strikingly, Wix or Squarespace

  • Cost: $79/month ($99 for insurance/superbill plan) + credit card fees
  • What is covered: You can't really go wrong with any of the website builders listed while everything else is covered through Jane: EHR, Intake Forms, Booking Site, Payment Processor (via Stripe or Square), HIPAA compliant Video Conferencing, 
  • Pros: Workflow is set out for you and you don’t even need to think about it. Allows you to easily add and remove services, offices, personne, etc. Suitable for solo practitioners as well as larger clinics.
  • Cons: More expensive than the Cheap & Dirty, doesn't have an ideal workflow for herbal medicine

Other EHR Options


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