resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Mind-Body in Motion
A central goal of low back pain treatment involves the correction of dysfunctional movement patterns believed to be responsible for spinal overload.
Let's Speak With One Voice in 2015
For the longest time, the chiropractic profession has attempted to achieve some form of unity. On a political level, this was characterized by an ultimately unsuccessful two-year merger effort between ACA and ICA leadership from 1986-1988.
The Conscious Evolution of Healing, Part 2
The idea of transmission is very important in the Chinese medical classics. According to author Claude Larre, the ancient Chinese were highly interested in the connection between things. Nothing was looked at as an isolated entity.
Connecting the Dots
In 2002, I published a book on patient examination procedures that included information on the procedural coding of the recommended examinations. The book should have been published in 2000, but I had trouble finding a publisher. Why?
Neuroscience: Where Western Medicine and Chinese Medicine Can Come Together
The recent advances in neuroscience are truly incredible. With this expansion of scientific knowledge, I would like to see even more research into the neuroscientific basic of acupuncture and Chinese Medicine.
Cell Health (Part 2)
Dr. Barsten, your book is about restoring "cell vitality." Can you briefly define the term? Cell vitality is more than the mere absence of symptoms or pathology, but optimum structural, physiological and energetic health.
The Top Seven Website Mistakes Clinics Make
The majority of acupuncture clinics finally have a website for their business. Having a website is crucial for being found online through Google, Facebook and review sites like Yelp.
Old TCM Sayings: Treat the Front to Treat the Back
Chinese medicine college was, and always will be, a memorable time. It was a time of massive personal and professional growth.
Case Histories from Bali: Treating Balinese Chidren with TCB and Shonishin
When I moved to the island of Bali in 2005, I offered my services in Bumi Sehat, which means Healthy Mother Earth, a free birthing center for poor and disadvantaged local women located in Ubud.
Put the Social Back Into Social Media
Social media is more than a passing fad, it is definitely here to stay. Social media apps and channels of distribution may evolve, but the concept of social media is now big business and a part of all our lives.
Reflections: The Art of Teaching Asian Medicine
Over the past three decades, my global workshops have been translated into German, Swiss German, French, Romansch, Spanish, Lithuanian and Xhosa. Time to offer you new teachers a few tips!
Leaving Footprints on Capitol Hill: Tribute to Dr. Kenneth Luedtke (1930-2014)
It was with great sadness that I heard of the passing of Dr. Ken Luedtke.
Unlevel Pelvis in the High-School Athlete: Exploring Causes and Effects
The unlevel pelvis is all too common in the high-school athlete and if not detected, will likely cause a lifetime of musculoskeletal issues. Any provider who doesn't look for this common finding is missing critical information.
Are You Really a Healthy Eater?
I always giggle a little bit (to myself) when someone comes into my office and informs me that they are a healthy eater. What exactly does that mean? Does that mean they eat sugar in moderation? And what's that, exactly?
Finding Balance in the Clinic
This past December, I celebrated 11 years in practice. I seriously don't know where the time went. I feel beyond blessed and grateful to be practicing our profound and beautiful medicine and to be helping guide my patients restore a state of optimal health.
It's Time to Create a Strong Acupuncture Footprint
Footprints in the sand. Footprints in the snow. Where do these footprints go? Some are big, some are small, but footprints are made by all.
News in Brief
An Encouraging Sign at Palmer; NBCE Announces Retirement of Longtime Director of Testing.
The CDC came out with a report in March 2013 that suggests 1 in 50 children will be diagnosed somewhere on the autism spectrum – significantly higher than the 1 in 86 figure that came out in 2007. What does this mean moving forward, particularly for children?
Help Your Parents Stay Engaged
As much as parents may wish it were so, children do not come with an instruction manual. There's no "how to" that can be followed and no two children are alike, so what works with one generally won't work with the next.
It might have been a miserable start to the day in the heart of downtown San Diego. A heavy rain had soaked the large homeless population congregating near the intersection of Third Avenue and Ash Street as they waited for a free breakfast to be served at the First Lutheran Church on the corner.
March, 2003, Vol. 03, Issue 03
Testing of Alternative Medicine ABC Codes Authorized
By Editorial Staff
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has approved a demonstration project to test a new series of codes for billing complementary and alternative medicine and nursing services.The project allows for the testing of advanced billing concept ("ABC") codes in transactions related to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. If approved, the new codes will fill a variety of gaps in the current health care coding system, and may ultimately lead to improvements in the management and delivery of health care in the U.S.1
The ABC codes were first developed in 1996 as a joint venture between the Foundation for Integrative Health Care (FIHC), an organization that "identifies and advocates the health-promoting and cost-effective practices of alternative medicine, nursing and other integrative healthcare professionals"; and Alternative Link, a health care information and consulting organization. The codes provide representations of alternative medicine, nursing and other integrative health care practices, consisting of a five-alphabetic-character field that describes particular health care services and supplies, followed by an optional two-character alphanumeric modifier that describes the type of licensed health care practitioner(s) who delivers that particular service or supply.
The ABC codes, approximately 4,200 of which have been developed to date, have gained the support of a diverse group of health care organizations, including the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) and the Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals (ABMP). The codes are designed to fill the gaps in the American Medical Association's Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes and other areas of the Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS), by describing certain integrative health care practices and practitioners more accurately. Currently, many services offered by CAM practitioners are not listed in the CPT codes, or do not conform with descriptions of those services. This is particularly true for massage therapists. However, this situation may be resolved independently of the ABC codes, with the approval of new CPT codes by the AMA's CPT Editorial Panel.2
In the demonstration project, the ABC codes will be used as a supplement to the existing health care coding system, and will be evaluated in relation to 10 objectives Congress originally mandated for the HIPAA code sets.
In a statement on its Web site, Alternative Link notes that the ABC codes "offer design, development and oversight improvements that deliver superior functionality and support areas of healthcare subject to widely varying state laws - improvements not available in the HIPAA code sets but essential to assuring the legality and appropriate representation of integrative healthcare practices."3
Testing will be conducted in three-month increments for up to two years. Testing will continue until the occurrence of one of the following events, whichever comes first: proof of a widespread and favorable (or unfavorable) cost-benefit ratio for ABC codes; the Department of Health and Human Services naming (or rejecting) ABC codes as a HIPAA standard; or a project deadline of Oct. 14, 2005.
Synthia Molina, chief executive officer of Alternative Link, cautioned that the demonstration project will test the viability of ABC codes in HIPAA transactions only, and that there is no definitive timetable for when - or even if - the codes will gain the support of the insurance industry. Nevertheless, she asserted that testing the codes would lead to "major improvements in the national health information infrastructure."1
To determine the effectiveness of the ABC codes, all HIPAA-covered entities, trading partners and their business associates are invited to participate in the demonstration project. To take part in the project, Alternative Link has created an online application at www.alternativelink.com/ali/DemoPro/DemoPro.asp. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has requested that all parties wishing to use ABC codes for HIPAA transactions sign up before March 16, 2003. For more information, contact Alternative Link at 505-875-0001, or the Foundation for Integrative Healthcare at 505-710-7390.
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