resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Let's Clear Up the Collection Confusion
This is an often-misunderstood practice swirling with misinformation. First, a few basics: Insurance is a contract between the patient and the insurance company. The insurance company is simply making a payment for services or care on behalf of the patient.
Shoulder Rehab: Start With the Scapula
The scapula is an incredible display of elegance and movement within the biomechanics of human motion. It's evolved for mobility and stability in the scapulo-thoracic region, giving us the ability to do things that are uniquely human, such as throwing with accuracy.
Five Branches University Has First Hospital TCM Residency
Established in 1984, Five Branches University (FBU) has campuses in Santa Cruz and San Jose, Calif., which serve the communities of Santa Cruz, the Monterey Bay, and Silicon Valley.
The winter season is upon us and offers unique challenges for the clinician and patient alike. To effectively navigate through the winter season there are two main TCM medicinals, Huang Qi and Gan Jiang, to consider, as well as two important formulas which feature these two TCM treasures.
Anti-Aging With Dr. Ping Zhang
Jennifer Waters, TCM practitioner and writer of the Acupuncture Today column, "Talking With the Masters" sat down with Dr. Ping Zhang to discuss aniti-aging with acupuncture.
Acupuncture Points: Broadening Our Scope and Diagnostic Work
As every practitioner knows, the correct diagnosis is everything. Most healing disciplines rely on the use of symptomatology for their treatment implementation. Beyond symptomatology, we have clinical tests to provide more objective findings.
Qigong for Substance Abuse
It is commonly believed that substance abuse, in addition to harming one’s physiological state, hurts the spirit. There is also a belief that one’s spirit does not weaken due to substance abuse, but rather, the person finds solace in addiction due to an already weak spirit.
Scar Reduction With Acupuncture & Microneedling (Part 2)
Protocols & treatment Timing
The Case Report: A Valuable Tool
Case reports are a valuable form of descriptive research. The most basic form of practice-based research, a case report is a detailed account of the history, presenting symptoms, assessment, observations, treatment and follow-up of an individual patient, discussed in the context of prior and potential future research.
A Conversation With Dr. Betty Edmond
This month's column is an exclusive interview with Betty Edmond MD, newly elected CEO/President of the AOMA Graduate School of Integrative Medicine in Austin, Texas.
Low Back Pain in Running Athletes
After 7 million years of adapting to upright postures, the lumbar spine and pelvis have become remarkably adept at managing ground-reactive forces associated with running.
An Education in Gluten Sensitivity
A relatively new syndrome officially documented as non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) or gluten sensitivity (GS) was officially recognized and published in the new list of gluten-related disorders in 2012.
A New Year and Vision for the ACA
Inadequate pain management coupled with the epidemic of prescription opioid overuse and abuse has taken a severe toll on the lives of millions of people in the United States. Every day, more than 1,000 people are treated in the ER for misusing prescription opioids.
Prepare for the End, From the Beginning: Wealth Building and Retirement with the Tao
Yin and yang flow into and out from one another continually. Beginnings become endings and endings become beginnings again. Wholeness and cycles are the nature of Tao.
An Opportunity & a Responsibility
Nearly 80 Americans die from an opioid-related overdose every day, and spine-related pain is one of the principle drivers of opioid use. This unfortunate situation creates both an opportunity and a responsibility.
Nutrition for Menopause: Front-Line Therapy for All Phases
Of all the changes women experience during their reproductive life, there is no doubt the most dreaded are the three phases of menopause. This is not surprising since all of the symptoms associated with menopause are replete with unpleasantness.
True Practice Mobility for the Chiropractic Profession
When natural disasters occur, chiropractors can literally travel to the other side of the world to offer humanitarian relief in less than a day. The chiropractor's license to legally practice, however, can't make it past the state line.
Flirting With Alternative Therapies
There are about as many adjunct therapies being marketed to acupuncturists as there are acupuncturists. While some may remain purist in their application of traditional Chinese medicine, others choose to explore new horizons of treatment.
We Get Letters & Email
Our Country Needs Us Between Elections, Too; Continuing Care: We Aren't There Yet; Our Associations Need to Do More.
The Acupuncture Channel System (Part 1)
The earliest Chinese reference to channels is in the Mawangdui Medical Manuscripts,1 which are dated to the Warring States period of the Zhou Dynasty (475 BC-221 AD). The text presents 11 channels. There are no acupuncture points listed in those channels.
Another Step Forward for Chiropractic
Chiropractic is now available to 86,000-plus Latter-Day Saints missionaries and you are invited to become a provider. LDS membership in not required; our only concern is that our missionaries get the best quality care available.
Crow Like the Rooster
As we welcome in the Year of the Rooster, we look at some of its major characteristics: confidence and communication, which suits the image we have of the Rooster...strutting in the farmyard, crowing to the others that it's time to wake up.
August, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 08
A Definition of Medical Massage
By W.D. "Peter" Lane, LMT, CNMT, NCTMB
There is a need to define the frequently used term "medical massage." One proposed definition would require a medical massage therapist to have significantly more training to qualify for licensure.The curriculum for medical massage would include cadaver studies, chemistry and nutrition, as well as an internship. The state would provide a separate license for a medical massage therapist, which would allow the practitioner to bill insurance. The insurance component would compensate a therapist for the additional required education. A medical massage therapist would work with a patient's primary care physician to provide optimum health for the patient.
One of the most vexing issues facing the massage therapy industry today concerns the term "medical massage." All health care professionals know what it is, yet few are able to define it. Yet, when we as bodywork practitioners answer the question of what medical massage is, we will further the goal of legitimizing and establishing advanced bodywork in the health care environment.
Why is "medical massage" creating such a stir in the massage and medical community at large? Who should be allowed to practice medical massage and how? When is it indicated and when is it not? I attempt to answer these questions from the standpoint of a licensed massage therapist and a certified neuromuscular therapist who has been treating patients in New Mexico for the past 12 years. My opinions are based on practicing in both the massage and medical environments.
I have come to these opinions based on a sincere desire to see the perception, understanding and appreciation of bodywork advanced throughout the U.S. with some degree of uniformity. More importantly, the bodywork industry needs a universal definition so when a patient seeks out the services of a medical massage therapist he or she will know that therapist is licensed and properly trained to treat their pathology. It's important to define medical massage to both eliminate imposters and to protect legitimate medical massage therapists.
In my opinion, medical massage should:
These days, many other definitions of medical massage are floating around the country. Some serve the limited financial gain of a person or organization promoting a particular definition. Some definitions state medical massage should only be practiced in a doctor's office under the absolute control of an MD or DC. If practiced in a PT clinic, it must be under the domain of a PT. One organization states only students who take their "national certification examination" in medical massage should be recognized as a medical massage therapist.
From an insurance billing perspective, there has been recent litigation attempting to prevent a bodyworker from filing insurance unless they are a "medical massage therapist." Fortunately, when the judge asked for a definition of medical massage and none could be offered, he ruled in favor of the massage therapist. It has become quite clear these definitions do not have at their core the benefit of the patient.
Under the definition I propose, an LMMT (licensed medical massage therapist) should be someone who has received training requiring more than the universal 500-hour training threshold that has become the norm for massage therapists. The curriculum should require more hours in anatomy and physiology, pathology, patient assessment, kinesiology, musculoskeletal anatomy, including cadaver studies, chemistry and nutrition. The curriculum would include alternative therapy electives, a segment on business and ethics, practice management and insurance billing.
I also propose a significant clinical practicum and internship. Included in this formula is a continuing education requirement that exceeds the current eight to 16 continuing education units required biannually by many states. The extra education can be accomplished within the context of a 2,000 to 2,400-hour program similar to the structure of training programs in place in Canada where 2,200 to 3,000-hour programs are standard.
An LMMT would have the option of practicing in a controlled environment such as an HMO, working in private practice or something in between. The state would be required to adopt separate licensure for LMMTs. Furthermore, the LMMT automatically should be included in the mix of approved therapies for insurance billing.
The benefits for patients and therapists are obvious. The patient will know his or her therapist is properly trained, qualified and competent to treat the condition they have been referred for. The therapist will have the satisfaction of knowing their training will bring measurable results to the patient and they will be compensated for their work by insurance. The insurance industry benefits by knowing an LMMT is ethically and legally following a standard of treatment and documentation. By arriving at a national consensus about the definition and training of an LMMT, the U.S. will have gained a cost-effective tool in containing spiraling health care costs.
A quality-driven, credible medical massage therapy program should be predicated on proper program development and organization complimented by a competent and experienced teaching staff and utilized in an active clinical environment. Too often, education and competency have not paralleled each other and curriculum has not been problem-centered and patient-based.
The following curriculum outline is designed to assist preeminent institutes for higher education in the medical massage industry. The medical massage program can be implemented in stages as instructors are trained and certified or offered as a comprehensive second-tiered advanced program.
Medical Massage Therapy Curriculum Outline
Anatomy and Physiology:
ACI-Cell anatomy and physiology
The chemistry and physiological processes of the body.
Musculoskeletal pathology and related disease processes.
Nutrition and your patient. Pharmacological and nutritional interactions and outcomes.
Medical Massage Theory and Disciplines:
Assessment Procedures and Protocols
Advanced Musculoskeletal Palpation:
Cadaver Dissection I-V
Medical Massage Clinical Practicum
Medical Massage Externship Program
Business and Ethics:
Insurance billing for the medical massage therapist.
History of Medical Massage
W.D. "Peter" Lane is director of the NeuroMuscular Therapy Center of New Mexico in Albuquerque, N.M. He is an instructor of anatomy and physiology and maintains a private practice treating patients who present with a variety of soft-tissue dysfunctions. For more information about the NeuroMuscular Therapy Center of New Mexico visit www.salubria.org.
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