resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Give Yourself the Digital Advantage
When you see this article in the print version of this issue and swear you read it already, don't be alarmed: you probably did. That's because by that time, the May issue will have been available online in digital format for three weeks.
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.
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.
April, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 04
We Get Letters & E-mail
By Editorial Staff
Massage Today encourages letters to the editor to discuss matters relating to the publication's content. Letters may be edited for space and clarity, and published in a future issue or online. Please send all correspondence by e-mail to .
Just wanted to say how very much I enjoy reading the articles [by Rita Woods]. The debut article in January was one that I related to on a personal level. Then came the next two articles and the timing couldn't have been more perfect, as I am new to teaching. It has helped. I look forward to more articles.
Jackie L. Lander, LMT
Why We Don't Need Government Regulation of Massage
I support the letter by Kay Gustin, LMT in the Feb. 2008 issue saying that we do not need state government regulating the business of massage. I am a massage therapist with a business in Wasilla, Alaska, a state which does not have any state licensing regulations for massage. We recognize that massage is a healing art that has been practiced for thousands of years and has been handed down from elders to grandparents to parents and to their children.
Most of our cities in Alaska are Native American (First Peoples), so massage is a part of their heritage and traditional medical practice. For a central government thousands of miles away to require us all to take 500 hours of formal training in a school thousands of miles away from our homes and villages would insult our elders. Is their careful teaching worth nothing? Furthermore, this is a ridiculous proposition for us economically. Licensing regulations serve private schools and other special-interest profit motives rather than the interest of our people. Many states, and even the municipalities of Anchorage and Fairbanks, require a GED to study massage and to secure the required license to practice massage therapy. Fortunately, most of the state of Alaska does not require this. What does having a high school diploma or GED have to do with massage except throw up a made-up hurdle to prevent competition in the market?
Kay Gustin is keenly perceptive when she points out that chiropractors have been state regulated and licensed for more than 50 years, but that this has not brought respect down upon them from most medical professionals. Indeed, respect must be gained on the merits of one's work.
Although, the municipalities of Anchorage and Fairbanks are unique in Alaska for having licensure requirements, they allow apprenticeship instead of schooling. However, these municipalities are under intense pressure from special interests to reverse this wise alternative. I think apprenticeships in a hands-on profession such as massage therapy are the only way to gain the skill and knowledge actually required to do the job.
But, it is quite important for massage therapists trained in apprenticeships to learn to work together with western medical professionals in a mutually beneficial partnership. This partnership will help bring respect to our profession, which government licensure regulation can never do. No hourly or yearly requirements on apprenticeships should be imposed, since a signature of an elder qualified to teach massage stating that a student is ready to practice is sufficient. Lobbyists for special interests stand in the way of such sensible alternatives in the interest of money in states where massage therapy is regulated.
Some therapists who support state licensure of massage believe that by fabricating hurdles making it difficult for people to get licensed, they will make more money. This anti-competitive behavior prevents many skillful and talented massage therapists, trained by their elders, from competing in a fair marketplace and it literally takes food from their tables. This evil practice should be acknowledged and stopped. One way to counter this constant lobby from these special interests is for us to write our state representatives to not support state licensure of massage therapy in states where this has not yet been imposed, and to reverse state licensure in licensed states, because this is a waste of our tax money.
Special interests will argue, "We need licensure regulation and national certification minimum requirements to protect the public from harm." Have you ever heard of a case of an unlicensed massage therapist who has injured the public by massage? That malpractice insurance is available to massage therapists for less than $100 per year proves the very low risk of injury from massage. Clearly, the public does not need any protection by government from massage therapists! Some argue that regulation will stop unethical behavior or blue-massage. The National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork publishes a list of page after page of licensed massage therapists whose certification has been revoked or suspended for unethical behavior in their practice of massage.
As Kay Gustin points out, state regulation has not stopped prostitution in massage. Therapeutic touch is often confused with sexual touch by most people in the United States, because most people in our society suffer from severe touch deprivation (see article by Daniel N. Russell, "Touch-Starvation: Severe Cost; Simple Cure," Alaska Wellness, Nov/Dec 2003, p 32-33). This confusion can be overcome and eliminated in part by education as Kay Gustin suggests, but this is not enough. We, as a society, also need to satisfy our human need for touch in positive and nurturing ways. Enlightenment is required at this time of violence in our culture.
Our government relies on a free market to solve problems in any market, and to ferret out bad practitioners in every business practice. Good massage therapists will, naturally, seek education and put those who do not provide positive results out of business. We should allow our free market to work to provide us with the best therapy, rather than support "Bolshevik" state licensure bureaucracies.
Daniel Russell, MS, LMT, NCTMB
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