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Syncretism: Acupuncture and Public Health in Cuba
"Syncretism" is defined as a union of diverse tenets or practices. On a recent trip to Cuba designed to demonstrate the integration of Traditional Medicine and biomedicine, our group witnessed this union firsthand.
Footsteps of the Sages: An Apprenticeship with Dr. Kezhan Zhang
When I met Dr. Kezhen Zhang in May 2013, I was his translator and the integrity, creativity, and passion he demonstrated as a practitioner and advocate of the medicine convinced me to travel to Beijing to study with him.
Tailor-Made Knee Pain: The Sartorius Muscle
A patient was referred to my office after receiving treatment from various providers with no results. The patient was training for the Olympics as a marathon runner and was unable to run or walk without severe medial knee pain.
Omega-3 Fish Oil: An Underappreciated Element of Men's Health
As a clinician with many male patients -- and as a man myself -- I am all too aware of the fact that we like to convince ourselves that we are doing great, when that may be the farthest thing from the truth.
Pro-Con: Swaddling for Newborns
The practice of swaddling has been used for thousands of years and was popular until the 1700s, when it was slowly abandoned by many cultures that considered it old-fashioned or barbaric.
One Size Does Not Fit All: Exercise and Nutrition According to Your Yin/Yang Body Type
There are countless new exercise and nutrition plans out there, emphasizing the latest ground-breaking research and claiming to revolutionize the way we view health.
Born to Energize the Human Spirit: Recollections of Sig Miller
Sig Miller, longtime executive director of the Association of New Jersey Chiropractors (ANJC), passed away on Sept. 17 after a long battle with cancer.
Chinese Herbs and Pulmonary Fibrosis: A Case Study
"Mary M."* recently celebrated her 90th birthday. Even the former sheriff dropped by to kiss the hand of this diminutive retired teacher, to honor the years she interpreted for him during interviews with Latinas and Latinos.
Too Many to Remember: Tips to Revive Your Ortho / Neuro Test Skills
When I was at Palmer in the mid-1980s, we were given a set of notes in one of our diagnostic courses. The notes covered approximately 70 orthopedic and neurological tests for various regions of the body.
Designing a Fitness Plan (Part 1)
It doesn't matter if you come to my practice for pain relief, weight loss, healthy aging or something else. The formula I talk about for each patient's fitness strategy is pretty much the same.
Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine in the West
We know acupuncture and Oriental medicine as the indigenous medicine of East Asia; in particular China, Korea and Japan are the countries of origin of this wonderful healing system.
Your Billing Questions Answered
I hear a lot of the following questions: I am afraid I may doing something illegal. I have heard I cannot have different fees for the same service.
Which Way is the Energy Going? Are You Burning Yourself Out?
One of the simple methods that I use to define Yin/Yang theory to patients is to ask the question, "Which way is your energy going?"
The Concussion-Subluxation Complex
In the Aug. 1, 2014 issue of Dynamic Chiropractic, I reviewed some of the literature demonstrating the role of the chiropractic adjustment in post-concussive care.
Diagnose Sprain Injuries in MVA Cases With Dynamic X-Rays (Pt. 1)
Am I the only person to notice hospitals are doing a seemingly insufficient job lately in their initial radiological workup of motor vehicle accident (MVA) victims?
North Carolina Acupuncture Board Files Dry Needling Lawsuit
In early September, the NCALB filed a complaint against the North Carolina Board of Physical Therapy Examiners over the issue of dry needling, a form of acupuncture that uses solid needles to puncture the skin and muscle tissue to relieve pain.
Mechanism: Experimental Approaches to Understanding Acupuncture, Part 1
The clinical benefits of acupuncture are difficult to ignore, but also can be difficult to explain to a Western audience. For nearly 50 years, relentlessly inquisitive scientists and physicians have been working toward a conceptual model to explain acupuncture.
Acupuncture Rising: From Acupuncture Anesthesia to Assisted-IVF, Part 2
Acupuncture's cultural and historical roots go back to the emergence of Chinese civilization. For more than 2,000 years, acupuncture needling has been continuously practiced on the largest population in the world.
Targeting the Bad Apples in the Bunch
While everyone was focused on the conversion to ICD-10, the Office of Inspector General for Health and Human Services released a new report on chiropractic titled "CMS Should Use Targeted Tactics to Curb Questionable and Inappropriate Payments for Chiropractic Services."
It's Time to Review
It is amazing to see the changes that are occurring in the acupuncture profession. Let's look at some of the news and events that have contributed to this growth and awareness.
The Modern Application of Ancient Mei Rong
Chinese Medical Cosmetology (Mei Rong) has a well-documented and venerated history dating back to the Qin (221-206 BC) Dynasty.
F4CP Making a High-Impact Impression
The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress has released details of its 2016 strategy, certain elements of which are already in play. The strategy includes ads, posters and other resources available to all F4CP members.
Dietary Fat and Prostate Cancer: An Important Update
K.M. Di Sebastiano and M. Mourtzakis published a review paper examining the role of dietary fat on prostate cancer development and progression late last year that does a stellar job of summarizing the available data on fat and prostate cancer.
January, 2009, Vol. 09, Issue 01
Insurance Acceptance and the Economy
By Vivian Madison-Mahoney, LMT
Unfortunately for some, the time has come. During these economically difficult times many therapists are expressing to me that they are now more than ever so grateful that they had taken the time and made the investment to learn how to accept, bill and be paid by some insurance for their client's therapy. At the same time, many therapists are now calling to request information about insurance billing, asking how they too can accept insurance because their clientele has dropped considerably due to the current economy.
Here is an example: A physician writes a prescription for a patient who is covered by insurance for an injury case. It doesn't matter that the patient may have lost their job, may have difficulty paying bills, buying groceries or gasoline. If they are legitimately injured, have insurance and their physician writes a prescription for medically necessary treatment, and you are the massage therapist willing to learn to properly accept and bill their insurance for reimbursement, you will be the one getting paid!
I'd like to share a true story with you; many of you will recall Hurricane Andrew. On Aug. 24, 1992, just before dawn, this hurricane nearly wiped Homestead, Fla. off the map, slamming into the entire city of 26,000 people as a Category 5 storm. Winds of up to 155 mph caused the loss of 23 lives, leaving no building untouched with damages costing insurance companies $26.5 billion. During the next recovering year or so, the insurance companies were holding onto their money in the process of deciding how they were going to cover and recover their losses due to this massive storm. Causing devastating financial hardship to several physicians, it was reported that many of them left Florida due to late or nonpayment of claims.
My massage therapy establishment was unbelievably successful. At the time of Hurricane Andrew, we were treating 23 to 27 insurance patients a day. During this time, insurance was slow to pay and we had a very difficult time keeping our heads above water. It was without a doubt a disheartening time. It was even more disheartening when I had to hold a meeting with the massage therapists working for me to inform them that we had two choices: close our doors or pay them $15 a session instead of the $25 to $35 some of them were making. I promised them if they would stay and accept $15 per session while we were going through these hard times, I would pay them the balance owed plus a $5 bonus per session, if and when we pulled through this crisis.
Not one therapist left me, and in about six months I was able to pay every one of the 12 therapists the entire amount I had promised! Not only did I pay the therapists but also my incredible landlord, a chiropractor, who knew my word was my bond and trusted me to pay when I could. As my rent of $3,900 a month began to get several months behind it became a very scary situation. Through it all, I kept my faith that all would work in our favor, and it did! I paid the doctor in full including even the free month he offered me.
Is accepting insurance always easy? Is life always easy? Are there ever any guarantees? No, but as in any situation, you have to do what you have to do. Preparing ahead is always best but if you have not been accepting insurance for your clients, why not start planning now to help in those times where money is tight? In economically hard times, I found that even the Palm Beach residents held on to their money or tried to get the best discount rates when they paid cash for their massage services.
Over and over, I thank God for opening those insurance doors and for physician referrals because it was only through this avenue that we were able to grow. It was only through this avenue that I was able to have several therapists working for me so that I was able to be with my family and by my youngest daughter's side when she was in an accident, spending months in intensive care and years in rehab centers. It was the kindness of not only friends and family but of our wonderful, caring patients and their referring physicians that helped see us through those very trying times.
It was only through this avenue that I was able to help so many injured and disabled patients through their physical, and even some of life's, challenges. When their insurance companies discouraged them, I was able to lift their spirits, show them the way, help them fight for their rights and otherwise, help them through their own trying times. I was able to learn and grow and am now able to help several other therapists to find a new life as I was so fortunate to do through accepting insurance for reimbursement.
I would like to wish everyone a very safe, healthy and prosperous New Year and thanks to all of my readers for your kindness and support in 2008!!
Click here for more information about Vivian Madison-Mahoney, LMT.
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