resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
The Visual Error Scoring System: A Concussion Tool
Postural stability and oculomotor function are the most easily recognized physical indicators of neurologic motor dysfunction associated with concussions.
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.
June, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 06
Opening Doors to Eldercare and Hospice
By Ann Catlin, LMT, NCTMB, OTR
It's no secret that the fastest-growing segment of our population is over the age of 65 -- and the greatest increase is occurring in those 85 and above. At the same time, there is growing awareness of the benefits of massage for people who are affected by debilitating illness, injury or cognitive impairment.There is clearly a burgeoning market for massage therapists who want to work in eldercare or hospice. But the people whom massage may benefit the most -- and who make up a big portion of this market -- are often embedded in a system that is full of intimidating obstacles for the therapist. They are behind the doors of long-term care and hospice organizations. You may discover that the door into these organizations seems closed -- closed not because you lack skill or passion for the work, but because you don't know the system and its jargon or how to get past the gatekeepers to the potential client. This article offers a key to open that door: knowledge of the system and how to navigate through it to help you succeed in expanding your practice to eldercare or hospice settings.
Types of Eldercare and Hospice
First, you must become familiar with the various types of eldercare or hospice organizations: assisted living, skilled nursing (nursing home), continuing care retirement and hospice.
Assisted Living The emphasis in assisted living settings is to support mentally or physically limited persons who need help with activities of daily living, but do not need the skilled medical care provided in a nursing home. Facilities consist of private rooms or apartments as well as common areas. These facilities provide 24-hour staffing, meals, housekeeping, social activities and limited nursing services such as management of medications. Some assisted living facilities provide specialized care for elders with Alzheimer's disease.
Skilled Nursing (Nursing Home) People enter a nursing facility usually as a result of illness, injury or mental or physical debility that requires 24-hour nursing care and continuous assistance with activities of daily living. Some require this level of care temporarily, and then return home. Others require permanent care. Facilities consist of semi-private or private rooms, a common dining room and social areas. Services include 24-hour nursing and personal care, meals, psychological and spiritual support, and planned social and recreational activities. Physical, occupational and speech therapy, as well as specialized care for those with Alzheimer's disease, may be available.
Continuing Care Retirement Community This is typically a campus setting with multiple levels of care including independent living, assisted living and skilled nursing. Residents can remain in the same community even if their needs change. Communities provide an array of services and amenities including dining, housekeeping, recreational activities, health care services, personal care assistance and nursing care.
Hospice is not a place but a concept of care. Eighty percent of hospice care is provided in the patient's home, family member's home and in nursing homes. Inpatient hospice facilities are sometimes available to assist with caregiving.
Most of these organizations will not have considered massage as an ancillary service. The following questions will be on the mind of a potential employer--be proactive in answering them.
How does massage help our residents or patients?
Not all administrators share your awareness of the benefits of massage. Remember that YOU are the expert on how massage therapy impacts the body, mind and spirit. These points will make a convincing case.
1. Massage alleviates aches and pains, resulting in:
2. Massage increases circulation, contributing to:
3. Massage provides tactile stimulation, which:
4. Massage induces a relaxation response, leading to:
5. Compassionate and caring touch supports emotional well-being by:
6. Focused touch enhances spiritual well-being, resulting in:
"It is the position of the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) that massage therapy can improve the quality of life for those in hospice and palliative care." AMTA evidenced-based position statement 2009
How do massage services benefit our profession?
Eldercare and hospice organizations are in business, too. They will want to know how massage services will improve their bottom line. Tell them that an organization that offers massage:
How does massage therapy help meet federal guidelines?
Massage services can be integrated into the resident or patient's plan of care. Documentation of your service contributes evidence of:
Who pays for massage therapy services?
The answer to this question lies in the structure of the agreement you have with the organization. You may be hired as a staff member, in which case you would be paid a salary to provide massage with or without employee benefits. More likely, however, you would be brought on as an independent contractor. In this case, there are two possible options for payment.
Option #1: The organization pays you an hourly rate for a set number of hours per month.
This offers them two advantages: any resident or patient may receive massage, and they can offer your services as a "value added" amenity, something that may be attractive to their potential customers. The advantage to you is reliable hours of work. The organization may also agree to pay you for staff massages or educational presentations.
Option #2: The organization permits you to offer massage on a fee for service basis. In this case, the resident or patient or his responsible party hires you directly; therefore you would work only with those individuals who have contracted your services. With this arrangement, there is no cost to the organization, which may appeal to the management. The challenge is that you have to attract and retain clients Ask the administrator or director to distribute information about your services. One suggestion is to place
your service brochure in the materials that all new residents or patients receive upon admission. Offer to give a short presentation about massage at family meetings or create a display for the lobby to announce the new service.
Other funding sources may include:
Is a physician's order required for massage therapy?
No. There are instances where you should consult with the physician to insure safety--for example, if the resident or patient has had recent surgery, acute illness, or chemo-therapy.
Can our staff members receive massage?
Care professionals can benefit from on-site seated massage to reduce the effects of job-related stress and prevent burnout. Massage is perfect for incentive programs to reward employees for a job well done! Offer to provide this service on a regular basis.
What qualifications should the massage therapist have?
Provide your license or certification credentials and proof of professional liability insurance. Highlight any specialized training in meeting the needs people in later life stages.
Including this special population in your practice can be professionally and personally rewarding. It requires specialized skills, sensitivity, and compassion--as well as a bit of a pioneering spirit. You can succeed in opening the door to eldercare or hospice organizations and in doing so reach out to those who need your touch.
Eldercare and hospice has its own jargon. Knowing how to communicate with the professionals who serve as gatekeepers in these settings will help you establish credibility and build relationships. Here are some terms that will help you "speak the language:"
Click here for previous articles by Ann Catlin, LMT, NCTMB, OTR.
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