resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Is the New Medicare Reporting Exemption Right for You?
What you've heard is not a rumor – there will be exemptions for providers of Medicare patients, with no penalties assessed for offices that do not do Quality Payment Program (EHR, PQRS, MACRA and MIPS) reporting.
Why I Quit Doing House Calls
My father was a chiropractor who did house calls, so when I became a DC, I figured doing house calls was part of the job. My March article recalled my experience as a small boy, accompanying my dad while he went to patients' homes to treat them.
Is It Time to Rethink Mental Illness? (Pt. 1)
Invariably, patients will ask their chiropractor about depression or various mental illnesses. Some practitioners will reflexively offer a cervical adjustment, suggest St. John's wort or contemplate a referral to a specialist.
Women's Hormones: A Western & Eastern Perspective
Sometimes it may seem that you require a degree in medicine to understand hormones and how they function.
The Visual Error Scoring System: A Concussion Tool
Postural stability and oculomotor function are the most easily recognized physical indicators of neurologic motor dysfunction associated with concussions.
Balancing Spring Challenges
As the winter months come to a close and warmer spring weather appears, patients may begin to present with new challenging pattern presentations.
Creating Good Business Buzz
What do patients really think about working with you? Rarely do you hear the whole truth. Those who improve may be candid in their gratitude.
An Integrated Approach to Chronic Pain
Findings from a unique Medicaid pilot project in Rhode Island involving high-use Medicaid recipients from two health plans were recently presented to the state's Department of Health, demonstrating stellar outcomes with regard to medication use, ER visits, health care costs and patient satisfaction.
New Relationships, Old Trauma: AOM & Other Healing Strategies
Being in love is one the most beautiful and enjoyable experiences. Most of us are willing to pay almost any price to have that experience, and still often find it elusive or fleeting. Navigating the ups and downs of loving relationships are often challenging — even for the most psychologically balanced among us.
An Unexpected Diagnosis: The Result of Lacking Communication
A couple years ago I had a case that showed me the importance of open communication between health practitioners. We need to show up with less fear, and let go of our judgments so we can do better for the patient.
Bill With Confidence: Learn What to Collect
Q: I am trying to understand what I may collect from my patient when there is insurance. Do I have to accept the amount allowed by the plan or may I collect up to my billed amount? Please note, I am not a member of any insurance plan.
Taking the Chiropractic Message to the Press
"There is no better place on earth to have a news event," the National Press Club boasts, and it's easy to understand why: Every year, the 108-year-old Washington, D.C.-based organization hosts countless press conferences on the hottest topics impacting America and often the world.
Eczema & Acupuncture: A Sound Solution (Part 1)
Eczema affects approximately 3.5 percent of the global population and is one of the most common skin complaints seen by dermatologists.
A Daily Strategy for Heavy-Metal Detox
In modern society, we are constantly exposed to heavy metals such as cadmium, lead and mercury. These heavy metals have no essential biochemical roles in our body, and conversely, can cause us a great deal of harm if they build up to toxic levels.
Universal Design: Principles & Practice
In many respects, universal design serves as the core of ergonomics. It's also a good tool to use when designing a return-to-work program for injured and/or ill patients. Let's take a closer look at universal design and why it should matter to you and your patients.
A Major Role in Back Pain: The Multifidus
Back pain affects roughly 80 percent of the population at one time or another and is one of the leading causes of doctor visits.
Clearing Blocks: A Way to Improve Cosmetic Acupuncture
As a Five Element acupuncturist who teaches facial acupuncture classes nationally, I was surprised to learn that one of the basic principles I was taught in school is unfamiliar to most acupuncturists.
Raditation & Your Smartphone: Is it Worth the Risk?
If radial arteries could talk (and in my experience they can to some extent), they would say, "Step away from the smartphone." At least that is the message I am receiving loud and clear as I feel the pulses of many patients.
News in Brief
ACA Adopts New Governance Model; ACA 2017 Awards; CCA Helps Calif. DCs "Share the Love"; $1 Million to Help Advance the Profession; D'Youville Raises the Bar on Anatomy Education; ErRatum.
August, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 08
Profitable Massage...But Not For You!
By Cliff Korn, BS, LMT, NCTMB
Thanks to everyone who wrote to ask why I left Massage Today! I didn't leave, of course, but many of you expressed surprise at finding last month's editorial written by Managing Editor Rebecca Razo instead of by me.It was flattering to get so many expressions of concern, and I apologize for not adding an explanation to Rebecca's excellent article, which gave me a needed break. So, like it or not, you are still subject to my thoughts and opinions, because I'm here for as long as MT will have me!
Getting right to it for this month, I'd like to ask you to hop on your computer, open your Web browser, and check out www.worldchiropracticalliance.org/tcj/2004/jul/ricchio.htm. If your sensibilities are even remotely similar to mine, you'll find it akin to dumping a bottle of hot sauce on your ice cream - it will make your nose wrinkle up right before your ears start to steam. The article is by Dr. Geoff Ricchio, a chiropractor who "advises" other chiropractors how to create profitable massage programs. In my estimation, Dr. Ricchio appears to be a genuine walking, talking ethics void! He also appears to want to ride your back all the way to the bank.
Some clues to his smarmy business practices are his advertised phone number (831-GET-PAID) and his moneymaking program named the "Rub Club Massage Income System." My first inclination was to ignore this individual as an isolated bump on the continuum of ignorance, but then I read his bio, which says the "Rub Club" is used by more than 600 chiropractic clinics nationwide; moreover, his article was published in a journal touted as being "Read and respected by more doctors of chiropractic than any other professional publication in the world." His preposterous statements to that large an audience deserve to be challenged!
Dr. Ricchio outlines six points ("Ricchio's Rules") for creating a profitable massage program. Three of the six are valid: He suggests creating a low-cost massage therapy program in a chiropractic office for the general public; he suggests it is wise to have the massage program available as part of a wellness program for the business community; and he suggests making massage available seven days a week to meet the scheduling needs of the public, as well as to generate passive income. I have no problems with those concepts.
Where Dr. Ricchio shows his true feelings related to massage are in his first three "rules," which I quote below:
The first rule isn't a rule at all but an opinion of you and me, and very likely a reflection of what a delightful man he is to work for! Rule two is indicative of Dr. Ricchio's feelings on the limited value of massage for anything other than filling his pockets. It is about as valid a point as suggesting that no one should ever pay more than $5 for a chiropractic adjustment. The third rule asks that chiropractors engage in discriminatory hiring practices. Sure, he says he knows it's "wrong" (not to mention illegal!) but suggests chiropractors do it anyway. I'll bet that violates an ethics or standards of practice document somewhere!
The reason for all these suggestions is made clear near the beginning of his article. He states, "I have used massage therapists in my practice for the last 18 years and found them to be an incredible adjunct, not only contributing to improved patient retention but increased income, as well." Isn't it strange that beneficial patient outcome isn't listed as one of the reasons to use massage therapy in a chiropractic setting, but merely for patient retention and increased income? He misses the most important part of why massage therapy and chiropractic share such a symbiotic relationship! It's about the patient, not him!
The complementary/alternative/integrative (pick one!) medicine movement has enough problems proving its credibility. Dr. Ricchio is likely to turn a discerning public away from chiropractic care, but I'll let that industry worry about its own health. My concern is that his espousal of the misuse and abuse of massage therapists will give the public a poor first taste of the abilities and potential for massage therapy as a wellness intervention. That adversely affects all of us! I asked several chiropractors I know to give me their opinions of Dr. Ricchio's article, but a tight deadline didn't allow them respond fast enough to get included in this editorial. I'm hoping that they get back to me with expressions of distaste for the concepts promoted by Dr. Ricchio.
Many of us who have worked for chiropractors or who regularly get referrals from chiropractors know just how well the two interventions work in concert toward optimum health. My suggestion to those of you courted by "Ricchio's Raiders" is to be very, very unavailable.
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 via 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.
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.