In this model, up to four people are seen together in a quiet room. The acupuncturist moves from one person to another, a brief quiet conversation takes place, treatment is given, and the person rests with the needles in. Patients often drift into a relaxed state or fall asleep. Working in this way, patients can be seen more efficiently, thus lowering the cost of individual appointments while continuing a high level of attention. Group treatment often allows patients with chronic conditions to schedule more frequent appointments if necessary.
There is more than efficiency to this model. A group of people relaxing together in a community setting provides a special environment, like a meditation hall. Sometimes it is more helpful, and more healing, to be with other people than to be alone in a room. Laura has chosen to treat patients on massage tables because of her devotion to the methods of Kiiko Matsumoto, which requires access to points on the abdomen and back. In this way, the Open City model is close to the way patients are seen in Asia or in Chinatown in Philadelphia.