A write-up about us in Boston Voyager Magazine!
Meet Mary Kinneavy of Boston Acupuncture Oasis in Copley Square
Today we’d like to introduce you to Mary Kinneavy.
Mary, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I started studying at the New England School of Acupuncture within two months of my first acupuncture treatment over 30 years ago.A couple of years after graduating and treating in a few different settings as well as teaching at my alma mater, I began treating at a public health clinic in Boston, where I worked for 22 years. Originally the AIDS Care Project, we saw only people with HIV and AIDS. After 10 years, it opened to the general public as Pathways to Wellness, and we saw the full range of patients and conditions that I now treat in private practice. I’ve been treating in my practice in Copley Square for four years. Being in the heart of the city is convenient for a lot of local Bostonians as well as people who work here or visit the city. I’m currently here one weekday into the early evening and both weekend days, so there are a lot of options for busy people!I also spend one day a week treating in an outpatient center at Winchester Hospital in Woburn. The combination of private practice, public health, and hospital-based clinics over the years has allowed me to see a huge number of patients with a wide range of conditions from HIV or cancer to those who come for general health and wellbeing support. I currently see a lot of patients for help with fertility challenges. It’s one of many things that acupuncture is known to be helpful for. I also treat many people with various pain conditions including recurring headaches, and help many patients with management of chronic illnesses.
Has it been a smooth road?
One of the biggest struggles in our profession is the general acceptance of acupuncture as medicine, even though it’s been in continuous use for thousands of years! That’s changed a lot since I began practicing, and working from a hospital is proof of the growing acceptance. For most people, acupuncture is still not covered by their insurance, and that can be a real barrier. That is also slowly changing. When it’s covered, people flood in to see us.Personally, marketing is always a struggle for me. I prefer to spend time treating patients rather than organizing ad campaigns.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
Well, lately I treat a lot of fertility clients and really enjoy working with them. Acupuncture not only works on a physical level, but is also very attentive to people’s emotions. Women and men going through fertility challenges often need that just as much – it can be a very stressful and uncertain time.I’m incredibly proud of having worked in public health and with chronic disease for so many years. Unfortunately that clinic closed in 2014 after 25 years due to a steady loss of funding over time. But I bring that depth and breadth of experience to my current practice. As well as length of experience – 30 years in practice!And I practice a gentle style of acupuncture that’s influenced by the Japanese techniques that drew me into it and transformed my own health early on. Even if patients have an initial trepidation about needles, they’re over it after their first experience!
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Yes, Boston is a wonderful city for acupuncture. We have a highly educated and creative population that embraces new ways of doing things. Bostonians value their health and include lifestyle changes to enhance their wellbeing. Many of my clients are healthy, but they work too hard and need some relaxation and stress reduction, for which acupuncture is wonderful. And of course, we have one of the largest medical communities in the country, and acupuncture fits in well with that.