resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Musculoskeletal Disorders Take Center Stage
Looking for the latest on the musculoskeletal pain epidemic and the increasing premium placed on preventive strategies including chiropractic? Check out The Impact of Musculoskeletal Disorders on Americans – Opportunities for Action.
Filling the Gap: The Role of Alternative Practitioners in a Broken Health Care System
I have been asked many times what got me into alternative medicine. My answer is simple: I want to truly help and make a difference in people's health.
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
News in Brief
A Moment of Silence for Dr. Stephen Press; New ACA President Elected; F4CP Offers New MemBership Benefit.
Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
Essentials of Assessment: The Squat
The squat is a simple, fast and functional tool to evaluate patient symmetry and function. As simple and easy as it is to implement, it can yield considerable amounts of valuable, clinically relevant information.
Recording and Appropriate Billing of Timed Physical Medicine Services
There is a common misunderstanding about timed therapy services and although you do have some knowledge of timed service documentation, based on your comment on the 8-minute rule, your understanding is correct, but incomplete.
The IME System: A Current Public Health Risk and Solutions That Are Working
I strongly believe in the independent medical examination (IME) system. There are far too many doctors in every profession who are not following E&M protocols and never claim MMI (maximum medical improvement) has occurred for their patients, which has caused financial stress for many private and public carriers.
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
How to Find and Fix TL Nerve Impingements
The thoracolumbar junction (TLJ) and the peripheral sensory nerves that exit from it are frequent, important and rarely recognized sources of lower back, pelvic and hip pain. Let's outline a clear exam protocol for diagnosing the problem.
The Power of Eccentric Exercise: Hamstring Injury Prevention and Rehab
For almost 20 years, I've worked with professional athletes who make a living by running really fast. It goes without saying that hamstring injury (HSI) prevention and rehabilitation is a big part of what they expect from a sports chiropractor.
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
The Value of Melatonin in Breast Cancer Prevention and Adjunctive Treatment
Although melatonin (MLT) is best known for its sleep-aid properties and as a natural remedy to prevent jet lag, extensive experimental studies suggest it possesses anticancer activity through several biological mechanisms.
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
Vitamin D Fails to Help Knee OA? The Proper Perspective
The March 8, 2016 issue of JAMA includes a study about vitamin D supplementation for osteoarthritis of the knee. This is a really weird study.
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
Business Lesson #1: Adapt or Else
My wife and I recently enjoyed an excellent meal at a restaurant recommended by some friends. We often have concerns about restaurant recommendations, as many have been disappointing.
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
April, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 04
Of Foxes and Henhouses
By Cliff Korn, BS, LMT, NCTMB
I rarely shy away from expressing my opinions about issues - good, bad or indifferent - related to the massage profession. I have written columns suggesting that state regulation in Mississippi and New Jersey is seriously flawed and detrimental to practicing therapists, and misses the mark of protecting the public.I recently was made aware of another state's massage board exercising its right to obtain a few minutes of fame. North Carolina's massage board recently posted proposed changes to its administrative rules, which rank up there with "world-class" bad legislation!
The individual who suggested I take a peek at the proposed rules did so because of some draconian clauses involving schools. Many who know me share my disdain of schools that use last year's students as this year's instructors, so I was prepared to be pleased to see that some of the schools' oversight was being tightened up. Unfortunately, "tightening up" in North Carolina means "bringing overbearing force."
One new rule would require schools to submit documentation and application on prospective new staff members before they begin working at the school - Stanford and MIT don't require that much oversight, nor does your local school district! If a faculty member gets hit by a bus the day before school starts, this rule would make it illegal to hire a completely qualified individual to meet the start of the school program! I understand the need to develop qualifications of instructors for any professional or trade school, but requiring the vetting of a board is several steps beyond reasonable need.
The massage board is further looking to regulate schools by doubling the fees and changing school renewals to $100 per student. From my brief analysis, this surely is adverse to all small schools in North Carolina, and is a major slap in the face to the profitability of one of the fastest-growing segments of massage education - the community college system. Community college tuition fees are mandated by law, whereas proprietary schools can pass through the new fees to students by charging higher tuition. It would be interesting to see if a proprietary school owner had a hand in the wording of these proposed rules, which seems to give that segment of massage education a competitive edge.
My guess, though, is that the average massage therapist is willing to let the schools fight their own battles and will focus instead on the impact on practitioners. I found these items of particular interest. There is a requirement to report others in violation of the state rules within 10 days, or be subject to the same penalties as the person causing violation. While I am a proponent of evaluation and policing by peers, I find this mandatory tattletale regulation offensive. I find it morally wrong when, as in North Carolina, the requirement is to report all charges of wrongdoing to the board, not just convictions. They seem to have missed the "innocent until proven guilty" clause in jurisprudence.
Arguably, the worst of the offenses that these proposed rules enable is the inclusion and misuse of much of the NCBTMB's Standards of Practice into North Carolina regulation. The new rules suggest that the proposed Standards of Practice section will provide a more comprehensive template for licensees to use as they carry out their professional duties. They say the requirements are intended to provide a greater measure of protection for the public as it receives massage and bodywork therapy in a wide range of practice environments. I think not; further, I think that the North Carolina massage board is attempting not to protect the public, but to shape the profession into a clinical perspective that the board itself holds.
It chooses to not develop its own Standards of Practice, but to cut and paste those from the NCBTMB. Its cut-and-paste method, however, is seriously flawed. In its wisdom, the NCBTMB chose to include, "if applicable" to many of its standards, realizing that circumstances and type of practice determine applicability. North Carolina chooses to say, "licensees shall" instead of "if applicable!" It has taken something good and turned it into something else to suit its own purposes. This is a common evil: using something for other than that which was originally intended.
I have long been a proponent of massage therapy as a regulated profession. One of the reasons I prefer it is because it lends itself to massage therapists providing peer review of complaints against other massage therapists. I have been a loud critic of nurses, chiropractors or others having oversight of massage therapy. That is particularly why I find the trend of poorly administrated regulation so frightful.
I see situations like this one (and those I recently reported on in New Jersey and Mississippi) as driving our professional self-determination into the hands of others. I hope that the ABMP, AMTA, IMA, and every other state and local association in North Carolina make their collective voices heard as to why the proposed changes should be reworked.
More importantly, I hope that all the practicing massage therapists in North Carolina exercise their rights to make comments to the massage board about these proposed changes. Any person has the right to comment on proposed changes to the rules.
If you wish to make such comments, the board requests that you:
It accepts written comments via United States Postal Service, private carrier or e-mail - but not fax. Your comments should include your full name, address and phone number. For more information, visit www.bmbt.org.
Thanks for listening!
Massage Today encourages letters to the editor to discuss matters relating to the publication's content. Letters may be published in a future issue of Massage Today. Please send all correspondence by e-mail to , or by regular mail to:
Former editor of Massage Today, Cliff is owner of Windham Health Center Neuromuscular Therapy LLC. He is nationally certified in therapeutic massage & bodywork and is licensed as a massage therapist by the states of New Hampshire and Florida. Cliff is a member of the International Association of Healthcare Practitioners; a professional member and past president of the New Hampshire chapter of the American Massage Therapy Association; a certified member of the Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals, Inc.; and a past chairman of the board of directors of the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork.
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