Community Outreach

Senior Residents Connect with AIMC Berkeley

July 2, 2014 by Krystal in Community Outreach

Pictured above: AIMC Berkeley Intern Practioners Keith R. La Bryer, Jonathan Armen, Suzie Luenser and supervisor David Caruso-Radin, LAc (far right.).

On Monday, June 30th, the residents of Mable Howard Apartments welcomed AIMC Berkeley intern practitioners into their home for a community outreach event. The Mable Howard Senior Residence, located on the corner of Alcatraz Avenue and Sacramento Avenue in Berkeley, is part of an affordable senior housing complex developed by the non-profit, Resources for Community Development (RCD). Residents of the apartment dropped by their second floor community room for a consultation from the attending AIMC Berkeley practitioners, supervised by David Caruso-Radin, LAc.

Consultations included tongue and pulse assessments and patient education. Guests were intrigued by the amount of information that could be deduced about the body just from the tongue and pulse diagnosis. While some residents had prior experience with acupuncture, many of the others were completely new to Oriental Medicine. Seniors with chronic conditions were able to seek specific treatment suggestions.

Residents also received a taste of what treatment could offer by way of ear seed therapy or magnet therapy. The traditional Chinese therapy involves taping small vacaria seeds or magnets on the ear points. The seeds apply pressure to the points and are left for 3-5 days. During that time, the seeds can be rotated in circular motions to stimulate corresponding points and internal functions of the body. Research has supported the use of this therapy in pain relief and addiction treatment.

The 40-unit Mable Howard Apartments have been open for 13 years. Residents span the ages of 67-100, and many have lived in the complex for over 5 years. The apartments were developed by the RCD ( and are part of a larger network of affordable housing for low-income seniors, working families and people with special needs. Ebony Smith, Resident Services Manager, explained that community events create new experiences and awareness for residents; experiences that are local, accessible and enrich their lives.

Community connection is also an important mission of AIMC Berkeley and an integral part of students’ development. As representatives of Oriental Medicine and their future practices, opportunities for intern practitioners to reach unique populations with varying conditions and knowledge levels of TCM are invaluable to the learning process. The connection to the community offers a new dialogue between patient and practitioner; presenting opportunities that increase overall comfort with communicating the medicine as well as practice in building trust with patients.

To find out more about AIMC Berkeley community outreach events or to host an event, please email our Marketing Assistant.

Article by Jessica Wakeman

Jessica C. Wakeman is a health and wellness explorer. Her journalism background and passion for exploring paths of well-being have granted her the opportunity to chronicle the journeys of many individuals in their quest for whole health. From the corporate sector to pediatrics, she delights in healing through storytelling.

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