How to choose a practitioner

It is an important decision to seek help from a health practitioner and this is particularly so if the method of treatment is not one with which you are familiar. It is generally emphasised to seek help from a registered practitioner. However, different countries have different regulations concerning this and some practitioners choose, for a variety of reasons not to be registered. They may be experienced and professional people so you need some system to check on individual practitioners.

Most people who come to see me are recommended by family or friends – they may have had treatment themselves or heard about me from other people. Such ‘word of mouth’ recommendations are a good way of assessing a practitioner.

Training and experience

It is essential that you consider the practitioner’s training and experience. Where did the person train and how long was the training? There are a bewildering array of qualifications and certificates. Checking directly with the person is the best way to find out what they mean. Do not be afraid of asking people about this as your health is too important to leave in the hands of poorly qualified people.

Involve yourself in treatment

I would encourage you to be actively involved in your health programme and discuss this with your practitioner. Ask questions but also take their recommendations. In this way, you will reap the benefits of the treatment more fully and quickly.

It would also be helpful to discuss at this time, the cost of treatment and are there any extra charges for items such as herbs. How long will treatment last and how often do you need to come are also useful questions?

Language and cultural barriers

Are there language and/or cultural barriers between yourself and the practitioner? This may not present a difficulty; there may be translator in the clinic and the practitioner may be skilled in pulse, tongue and observation methods of diagnosis of Chinese medicine. However, if you wish to discuss personal issues this may not be possible if the practitioner has limited skill in your language.

Atmosphere of treatment

Treatment is not just about formal qualification and training. It is also about how you feel with this particular person. Healing takes place in an atmosphere of relaxation and with feelings of trust and security. This means that it is your personal connection with the practitioner (and theirs with you) which is the single most important thing to consider. You may be discussing quite personal feelings and thoughts and you are certainly experiencing a treatment which can affect people quite deeply. It is more effective and certainly more curative when you feel comfortable with the practitioner.

Some practitioners treat two or sometimes more people at the same time using different rooms. They will therefore spend less time with you. This may not be important for you particularly if you have a simple mechanical problem such as a sport’s injury or single joint pain. For deeper problems, especially if accompanied with psychological symptoms, you may need more individual care.


The price of a treatment is dependent on many factors. The location of the clinic is the main consideration. For example, an appointment will cost much more in New York City than in rural Ireland. Discuss it with your practitioner before attending so that you are clear about how much treatment will cost. It is usual to make any additional charges for herbs.

Contact me personally for precise details of cost.

What to expect from a visit to a professional practitioner

There are several levels on which you may seek treatment. I know from my own practice that each person has their own reason. There may be a specific symptom which is causing you discomfort or limitation. There may be a general feeling that ‘things are not right’ without there being a particular symptom or disease. You may wish to receive treatment to maintain a good level of health and hopefully prevent problems developing later. More and more people fall into the latter category as Chinese medicine becomes more widely known. However, it is true to say that most people still come because of some long-standing symptom or collection of symptoms.


The exact format of the consultation will depend upon each individual practitioner. Appointments tend to be long, at least half an hour and in some cases up to an hour. In this time, a case history will be taken, symptoms noted and information gathered about current levels of health as well as past medical history. The tongue and pulse will be examined and a diagnosis in terms of Chinese medicine made on the basis of this information.

My appointments are generally 30 minutes long. People are free to contact me for support between appointments. I often see people monthly although at the beginning of treatment or for more complex cases, I may want to see people more frequently. As people improve, the time between appointments can be increased.

  • Contact Details:

    Fionnuisce, Heron Court, Market Quay
    Bandon, Co. Cork
    Republic of Ireland

    75 Grove Road, Chichester PO 19 8AP, UK


    Email Me

    +353 (0)87 9266234 (Ireland)

    +44 (0)7385891551 (UK)

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