resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Lime Jello on Morphine
Taste is in the eyes... actually the mouth... of the beholder. My food preferences have changed, lightening from the food of my youth. My parents loved heavy eastern European cuisine and I loved it as a child. Now I enjoy leaner, healthier whole foods.
AOMA Strengthens Leadership Team
AOMA Graduate School of Integrative Medicine, a leading college of acupuncture & herbal medicine, announced the appointment of Donna LaPoint Hurta, MBA as the new VP of Finance & Operations this Fall.
To The Finish Line With the Help of TCM
When acupuncturist Eddy De Smedt pursued a career in Traditional Chinese Medicine, he knew he wanted to make a difference.
Jingei Diagnosis: An Effective and Powerful Diagnostic
I graduated from the Kotatama Institute under the direction of Drs. Masahilo and Katsuharu Nakazono in 1984. As a student, I was exposed to the practice of most of the various theories and modalites of Oriental Medicine.
Healing With TCM at San Quentin State Prison
For the prisoners at San Quentin State Prison, life-sentences are the reality of every day life. It is not often that prisoners get the opportunity to use alternative medicine to deal with common ailments they encounter behind bars such as, depression, anxiety and pain.
Talking to Patients About Healthy Aging
I've noticed that a particular category of patients seems to make up more and more of my practice – they work out, but still experience lots of degenerative joint disease (DJD) issues.
Transparency and Accountability: Q&A With the CCE
Every profession needs an organization dedicated to upholding the quality and integrity of its degree programs and educational institutions.
The Heart Protector
On the physical level, the Pericardium is a double-layered sac of fibrous tissue that envelops the Heart. The space between the layers is filled with serous fluid that protects the Heart from external shock or trauma and lubricates to allow for normal Heart movement.
Blaming the Gluteus Medius, Overlooking the Deltoid
The gluteus medius (Gmed) is commonly written about, strengthened and blamed for many conditions, and rightfully so. After all, the Gmed plays a role in pelvic stability, hip motor control and lower-quarter dynamic movements.
Web Marketing: Content Is King
Google's sweeping updates to its search algorithms over the past few years have brought a paradigm shift in how you can optimize your chiropractic website to gain maximum marketing leverage.
Managing Patient Expectations About Acupuncture
Last year, I attended the Pacific Symposium in San Diego for the first time in six or seven years. It was the 25th anniversary of this event, and on one evening there was a panel discussion with the title; "What is Qi?."
Calcium Helps Prevent Colorectal Cancer
Over the past 25 to 30 years, studies have suggested calcium may confer protection against colorectal cancer.
Managing Today's Fertility Patient
I recently received an email from one of my fertility patients: "Got my lab results back. FSH is 11, AMH is 0.7. My doctor said these numbers aren't good. I guess I'm infertile. Just as a thought. Just set up an appointment to speak with an adoption agency."
The Wonders of Light Therapy: An Interview with Wes Burwell
I first met Wes Burwell in 2011 when he was teaching a class on light. Since then, every time I hear him speak, his understanding of the benefits, function and capacity of light has evolved.
Simple Ways To Find True Happiness
Patients in our clinics are always seeking happiness. As their health advocate, we need to ensure we inform them that in order to find happiness, they have to make sure to identify what makes them happy in the first place.
The X Factor in Clinical Research: The Patient
It was the great baseball legend, former New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra – he of countless aphorisms, each with a mind-bending twist – who once declared, "You can observe a lot by watching."
Understanding and Identifying Pediatric Growth-Plate Fractures
In general, fractures in children heal well with little intervention as long as the alignment is good. Fractures involving the growth plate, however, are a different issue. In fact, growth-plate injuries are the primary reason for the subspecialty of pediatric orthopedics.
5 Ways to Occupy Occupational Health
Despite the progress that has been made to better protect workers, occupational health and safety remains a priority area for many national governmental organizations due to the widespread problem of occupationally related morbidity and mortality.
Pulse Diagnosis: What We Know
I am still finding pearls of wisdom from the books and papers that I inherited from my pulse diagnosis mentor Jim Ramholz.
Saying No to Medicine
An interesting article recently appeared in Men's Journal titled "When to Say No to Your Doctor." The article begins with the summary statement above and effectively arms readers with information that will help them "take more responsibility for your own health care, because you can't be sure anyone else is.
Help Patients Achieve Optimal Vitamin D Levels
Much research has been done on vitamin D levels and their impact on health; optimal levels have been correlated with a reduced risk of developing numerous conditions.
February, 2003, Vol. 03, Issue 02
By Steve Capellini, LMT
Author's Note: The Spa Letters column features news, personality profiles, trends, and plenty of professional possibilities for LMTs in the spa industry. The style is epistolary, meaning the articles are letters to a fictional massage therapist friend of the author.
So, the medical spa is open, and you're interfacing with doctors and nurses and physical therapists. You're looking at forms, charts and files. You're wearing blue surgical scrubs to work, and feeling a little different about your massage career than you did a few months ago at the luxury spa. It's not exactly the way you thought it would be, is it? I understand you're feeling a little let down now, after all the anticipation of getting the medical spa up and running. Reality is seldom as romantic as imagined.
Your two main complaints about your new position are ones I had myself, when I first worked with plastic surgeons who were converting their offices to mini-spas. Complaint number one -you feel there's too much emphasis on the external beauty aspect of the services rendered at the spa, rather than true health and well being; complaint number two - you didn't fully realize you'd have to wait until the insurance reimbursements came through to receive the commissions on the services you give.
I'll talk a little about these issues, and see if there's a way I can help put you more at ease when it comes to working in the medical spa environment. You don't want to bail already; after all, it's only been a month, and you're not even sure the spa will be a success or not. I think you should give it more time and see what happens, especially considering you've just relocated to a new city.
More Than Skin Deep
I can see why you might feel the spa is focusing too much on the aesthetic aspects of health (tummy tucks, liposuctions and face lifts), rather than the holistic/preventive aspects that inspired you to join the field in the first place. You're at a medical spa, where you thought you'd have the chance to interface with people on a more in-depth level, and you've ended up dealing with more superficial issues than you did at the luxury spa. There, you were free to deal with clients as you saw fit, but now things are more regimented. How can you apply your deeply therapeutic skills to someone interested primarily in reducing hip measurement?
I think we're at an early phase of the entire medical/spa integration, and we have a long way to go to reach the lofty plateau you thought you were going to step into right away. Indeed, a handful of spas offer guests serious medical screening and comprehensive lifestyle assessments, such as those at La Quinta Spa, the Chopra Center for Well Being at La Costa, and the Ojai Valley Inn & Spa's Destinations Health programs. I believe this is the wave of the future, even though it's taking a while for the general public to catch on and fully embrace the new paradigm.
What we have to deal with right now, however, is that a majority of the public regard spas as places where they can go to look and feel their best. These are the famous "Baby Boomers" who want it all, and want it now; the me, me, me, me, me generation. I know this doesn't sit well with your natural therapist's instincts of wanting to help people on a meaningful level, but I don't think you should write off the medical spa just yet.
The way I feel about this issue can be summed up in the words of Jen Kerr, who once said "I'm tired of all this nonsense about beauty being only skin deep. That's deep enough. What do you want, an adorable pancreas?"
In other words, it's OK for people to be focusing on their beauty, Lou, and you can help them get the most out of their experience, rather than fighting against what you called the "superficial culture" of the spa.
I know it must be tough, waiting months for a good chunk of your money to come through, but hey, you knew buying into the medical model was going to have some drawbacks. The insurance labyrinth is one of them. I agree it's not an ideal situation, and as an employee, you shouldn't have to wait to receive compensation, just because the business hasn't received payment for the services you've rendered. But remember, you are not just an employee; you're a partner, with stock options, and you're partaking of both the upside and the downside of the business's cash flow.
Consider yourself lucky that a large percentage of the medical spa's business is "out of pocket" because these are for the most part elective cosmetic procedures not covered by insurance. Can you imagine what it would be like if 80 percent of your paycheck was withheld, rather than 20 percent?
Give It Some Time
Lou, it concerns me a little that you're already thinking about leaving the medical spa. You should at least give it a couple more months. Sometimes those of us in the spa industry for a long time refer to the high-turnover rate in soap-opera terms - "As The Spa World Turns." People are constantly hopping from one property to another, sometimes to the detriment of the spa guests' experiences.
I'd like to see you hang in there for a while and see where this medical spa paradigm will take you. Who knows? There may be some unknown reason you are where you are right now. Perhaps it's not the stock options, or even the chance to work in a medical setting, that has brought you to where you are, but something else entirely - something hidden, something about to be. Just wait and see.
Until next time,
Steve Capellini, LMT
Click here for previous articles by Steve Capellini, LMT.
Join the conversation
Comments are encouraged, but you must follow our User Agreementcomments powered by Disqus
Keep it civil and stay on topic. No profanity, vulgar, racist or hateful comments or personal attacks. Anyone who chooses to exercise poor judgement will be blocked. By posting your comment, you agree to allow MPA Media the right to republish your name and comment in additional MPA Media publications without any notification or payment.