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How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
Apple Takes a Bite Out of Research
The more than 700 million iPhone users have just been given the opportunity to "do their part to advance medical research."
Make Every Day Mother's Day
May is a special month for many reasons. After a long, harsh winter, spring is at last in full swing. Memorial Day helps us honor those who have fought and fallen in the name of freedom.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
If Your Pro-Chiropractic Governor Resigned, Would You Be Prepared?
John Kitzhaber, MD, recently re-elected to a historic fourth term as Oregon governor, has resigned among alleged ethics violations by his fiancée' and first lady, Cylvia Hayes. I developed a personal friendship with John and consider him a good friend.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
News in Brief
Dr. Frank Nicchi Receives Award at ACC-RAC; Sherman College Expands International Influence.
Talking to Patients About Medial Branch Neurotomy (Part 2)
Even when lumbar facet denervation (medial branch neurotomy) is successful, relief is rarely complete or permanent. Smuck, et al., reviewed 16 articles and found the average duration of >50 percent pain relief for an initial procedure was nine months.
Trouble in the Wellness Waters?
Call me old-fashioned, paranoid or just old, but I do remember graduating from chiropractic college in the late '70s in the midst of the Wilk v AMA lawsuit.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
Teach Your Patients About External Healing Applications
Since the skin is the body's largest organ, and is able to respond to both internal and external stimulations, communicate sensations to the brain, protect the body, breathe and even excrete toxins, it can be an excellent source of healing.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
Functional Impingement of the Hip (Part 2): Rehab Exercises
I find functionally impinged hips that don't move properly on so many of my patients. (See part 1 of this article for a description of the condition.)
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
Applauding a Legacy of Leadership
Founding Palmer West President, John Miller, DC, HCD (Hon.), FICA (Hon.), a 1954 graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic, passed away March 8, 2015 at age 83.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
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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