Dry Needling Rulings

Colorado

Is Dry Needling Legal in Colorado?
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  • In July 2005, the Director of the Colorado Board of Regulations determined that dry needling is within the scope of physical therapy practice.
  • On December 12, 2017, Colorado District Court Judge A. Bruce Jones denied a Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief filed by the Acupuncture Association of Colorado and the Colorado Safe Acupuncture Association on February 16, 2017, against the Colorado State Physical Therapy Board. The acupuncture associations asserted that dry needling would exceed the statutory scope of practice for physical therapy. As has been presented in other states, the acupuncture associations suggested that physical therapists use dry needling "without adequate training." The judge ruled that any negative economic impact of dry needling by physical therapists on the practice of acupuncture had no standing. Of interest is also that the judge ruled that "there is sufficient elasticity in the Act’s definition of physical therapy to encompass dry needling."