resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
October, 2005, Vol. 05, Issue 10
Mother Nature's Disastrous Touch
By Cliff Korn, BS, LMT, NCTMB
I just turned off the news. The constant updates on the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina represent about 90% of the airtime. The news keeps reporting on the impact of Katrina. I don't think it comes close to representing the true "impact." A week ago, when the worst was happening, I remember being unable to tear my eyes away from the TV screen, even though watching was making me nauseous.As estimates of impact roll in on the numbers of homeless, the numbers of unemployed, the numbers of failed businesses, the economic impact of Gulf oil production, etc., etc., it is beginning to occur to me that these macroeconomic extrapolations are, in truth, dwarfed in comparison to individual tragedies.
I'm sure no one has any true estimates, but it's safe to say that a certain number of those no longer employed are massage therapists. I look within our professional community and know that large percentages are part-time massage therapists and single moms who strive to feed their families and fulfill their dreams. We have a great profession that lends itself well to Mothers' hours, but what good are Mothers' hours if the treatment room is gone or the clients have evacuated?
I honestly have no clue as to whether or not the average self-employed massage therapist is eligible for unemployment. I feel pretty sure that those working "under the radar" in licensed states are ineligible. Even in large clinics, many massage therapists are functioning as independent contractors instead of employees. Massage therapists who have lost their business location due to storm damage are particularly at risk if relocating to adjacent states. There are no states that I am aware of with licensing reciprocity, so a therapist trying to temporarily work in a neighboring state would likely be in violation of the law, with consequences ranging from loss of insurance coverage to actual arrest. I don't think this is an overstatement. This morning's news had an article about a hurricane victim who had fled with his family to Atlanta. With no more money or food, the man resorted to asking for help from others and was promptly arrested for panhandling by a patrolman on bicycle. If panhandling results in arrest, certainly working without a license could result in similar actions.
So what is the temporarily out-of-work massage therapist to do? What are massage students to do now that their school is no longer in business? If their graduation is postponed, how much longer must they wait to begin practice? The implications to massage therapy are many.
Being a "guy," I have a tendency to look for solutions to problems, and the dilemma of the out-of-work massage therapist is one problem I have been pondering. I don't have a background that lets me contemplate changes to levees or egress transportation logistics, but massage therapy regulation is not unknown to me. It seems prudent to me for massage regulatory boards, at least in states bordering Katrina-affected states, to enact or petition their legislatures to enact an emergency waiver of massage licensing regulations for itinerant therapists temporarily working in the state. I'm sure there are valid reasons to not do this, but I haven't thought of any yet that aren't outweighed by the benefits of enabling those in need to generate income. I know that if it were me in need, I'd prefer to be able to earn my way out of the hole rather than accept charity. I ask all massage boards to look into this now for immediate emergency implementation, and to then spend some planning time developing some options for future licensure waiver situations.
It's nice to be proud of my peers, and I am delighted at the expressed desire of so many to help the victims of Katrina. The major massage associations are assisting their members' desires to help by coordinating fundraising efforts and disseminating information. I just heard of one association state chapter that has established a "Therapist Relief Fund" where collected monies will be used to help at least 3 or 4 therapists with start-up costs for getting their businesses going again or relocating. What a wonderful idea!
Perhaps a less wonderful idea, although caring and tempting, is the plan to pack up and travel to a disaster area to "help." Specialized experience or training is required to be of real assistance. Showing up in locations without food, water or shelter and expressing a desire to be of assistance might be just getting in the way. Just like a therapeutic session in your office, the needs of the client must supersede the needs of the therapist to "help." And although the desire to help those in stricken areas may be overpowering, let's not forget all those who may need help locally! As I write this, 39 states have welcomed evacuees. Your "regular" clients might be connected to storm victims and be under added stress. Many local families have military members who now have additional or extended duty involving further family separations. They all need you right there in your office!
Another way to be of real assistance is to donate to legitimate organizations providing disaster relief. I have seen several companies offering to match donations made by individuals, and this is an excellent way of maximizing your ability to help!
Unlike Mother Nature's Disastrous Touch, the human Power of Touch can connect us all. Whether in roles of family members, friends, co-workers or citizens, we all are human beings who need to have security to feel safe. As massage therapists, we have a unique ability to make people feel secure at least in their own bodies. Times might be stressful and difficult for many, but we still are lucky to be who we are. Let's make the most of it!
Thanks for listening!
Massage Today encourages letters to the editor to discuss matters related to the publication's content. Letters may be published in a future issue or online. 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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