Meet Our Founder

Elise Rivers, founder and acupuncturist, started CAMA Wellness Center 15 years ago. Learn how Elise’s and her staff’s passion for whole-hearted wellness, back on our 10th anniversary, has helped thousands of people become more healthy and vibrant. 

T. Collin Campbell's program at Cornell Univerity
Certified in Oncology Acupuncture
Mulching tree pits on Germantown Ave
Elise describes her work over 9 years as a board member of the Mt. Airy Business Improvement Disctrict (MBID)
Winning the City Gardens Contest for the 6700 block for improvements she implemented
Elise with her Won Institute students where she taught acupuncture for 15 years

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Our Staff by Department

We offer affordable, compassionate, effective, preventive, holistic care, including: acupuncture, bodywork, plant-based nutrition and self-care education.

Our Care Consultants' sole job is supporting you. They offer free Care Plan consultations, phone and email support and education about using our alternative therapies efficiently and effectively.
Meet our Care Consultants
Acupuncture is a 2500 year old healing art that is empirically effective--meaning over thousands of years, it has proven itself to be a method of healing that works.
Meet our Acupuncturists
Learn more about the Northwest Center for Food As Medicine that provides education and support to transform your health.
Meet our Plant-based Nutritionists
Bodywork is extremely effective at managing stress (which underlies most chronic diseases), repairing injuries, and calming the body.
Meet our Bodyworkers

Stories From Our Clients

We’ve been serving the Mount Airy region for over 15 years and have been privileged to serve thousands of clients from all backgrounds. Hear what they have to say…

Our Founder: Elise Rivers

Elise Rivers

Elise Rivers is the founder and owner of Community Acupuncture of Mt Airy. Elise specializes in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and is also a Certified Asian Bodywork Therapist (Shiatsu). She has been practicing Asian medicine for more than 19 years.

A top graduate of the New England School of Acupuncture with a Masters in both Japanese and TCM-style techniques, she is also a certified practitioner of the National Acupuncture Detoxification Association (NADA), requiring completion of a comprehensive training in auricular (ear) acupuncture, and a ten month curriculum in addiction behavior and treatments. As part of her training she worked at the Dimock Community Health Center in Jamaica Plain, MA and the Wellness Center in Boston, MA.

Elise enjoyed sharing her knowledge for 15 years ago as part of the staff of the Won Institute for Graduate Studies to teach point location, a foundation course for acupuncturists.

She feels very strongly that acupuncture is ancient medicine for modern times and should be made accessible to as many people as possible. This led her to found CAMA, Philadelphia’s first community clinic in 2005, based on the model started in Portland, Oregon. It is her sincere wish that many people will partake and benefit from this model of affordable, accessible care.

Often, through the Mt. Airy Learning Tree, Elise teaches her introductory class Curious About Acupuncture? to help people understand what acupuncture is all about and how it can help them. Click here to register for her March 15th, 2020 class: Empower Yourself with Holistic Medicine.

Our about

Care Team

Your Care Consultant is the point person on your self-care team.

New patients are strongly encouraged to schedule a free New Patient Orientation. We’ll help you understand how the holistic model works, and help you set up a care plan to address your health concerns.

Existing patients can also book a free consultation anytime to get answers to any questions, and receive help designing or adjusting your self-care wellness plan.

India Nixon, Care Consultant

I began my wellness journey in college where I worked in the Wellness Department at the Student Health Center. This experience quickly grew my interest in public health work, and I gained employment as a Case Manger at First Nations Community Health Source in Albuquerque, NM. I saw that the work I did partnering with schools and teachers was the best way to be of service, so I joined AmeriCorps as a Public Ally at South Valley Community High School. This began a 10 year journey, first becoming a high school teacher, and then a children’s museum director. I look forward to meeting with new and existing patients to share all of the wonderful treatment modalities that CAMA offers.

Max Rivers is co-owner of CAMA, and one of the designers of the Care Plan system. He has been living a whole-foods, plant-based lifestyle for 8 years. 

His commitment is to understand your health needs, and help you develop the skills and frame of mind to take control of your personal health journey. 

It is a journey! And one best not done alone. Besides CAMA’s beautiful setting, and our welcoming and committed staff, he sees your CAMA Care Team as consisting of all of our staff: from the receptionists who meet you at the door, to the acupuncturists, body-workers and plant-based nutritionists. That’s why the word “Community” is in our name!

Max Rivers, Care Consultant

Meet Our Nutritionists

Kirsten Puskar


Kirsten Puskar, MS, RDN, LDN

Kirsten is a registered dietitian nutritionist licensed in Pennsylvania and an experienced practitioner of medical nutrition therapy (MNT). She has been helping people improve their health her entire career, initially by designing parks and healthcare gardens as a landscape architect to promote more physical activity.


To make the most of your consults with Kirsten, ideally you have your most recent blood test results (within the past 4 months). She’d like to see a Lipids panel (cholesterol), Vitamin D levels, and if pre-diabetic or diabetic the HbA1c, and any blood sugar logs or meter if you’re testing. It is also very helpful for her to see what clients are eating for 2-3 days before the appointment: simply document what you eat on what you feel are your “healthy days.”

Her specialty is providing food choices that fit into your life, and improve your overall health. Meeting with Kirsten for a personal nutrition consultation will involve reviewing your current eating style and preferences, and helping you find alternatives that you enjoy, and that have the potential to dramatically improve your health. Your conscious food choices are the key to living a longer, happier and better life!

She was also always interested in how food choices help improve lives, and as her children entered college, she entered the healthcare profession. She chose to study health and nutrition and to become a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator to support people in finding healthy alternatives to the Standard American Diet, a diet that generally leads to developing one of our 3 major killers: Heart Disease, Diabetes or Cancer.

Kirsten has degrees from Penn State and Drexel and currently works part-time at Chestnut Hill Endocrinology as their diabetes educator. 

Insurances Accepted:

Kirsten accepts insurance that may cover your nutrition consults with a $40 co-pay:

  • AmeriHealth Inc. Administrators
  • Cigna
  • Independence Administrators
  • Independence Blue Cross
  • Keystone HPE
  • Keystone 65
  • Medicare

If you have any of these as your insurer, please contact them to get the details of your coverage.