resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
June, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 06
Heating Up Your Practice Safely: Feedback From Readers
By Dixie Wall, Contributing Editor
After receiving many compelling comments to the two-part series, "Heating Up Your Practice Safely," I was inspired to publish some of the common questions and insightful comments I received. As always, I appreciate your questions and comments and am always open to being educated by my readers.
"Thank you for the much-needed article on safety while using heat during massage therapy. I would just add multiple sclerosis to your list of conditions in which to avoid heat. Though it is considered to be an auto-immune condition, some may not know that and cause great harm. Thank you so much."
Thank you for your response to my article. Multiple sclerosis is an important addition to the list of diseases contraindicated for heat therapies. Multiple sclerosis is a chronic, often disabling auto-immune disease that attacks the central nervous system, which is made up of the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves. More specifically, the body's own defense system attacks the myelin sheath (the fatty substance that surrounds and protects the nerve fibers in the central nervous system) leading nerve fibers vulnerable to damage. The injured myelin forms scar tissue (sclerosis), which gives the disease its name. When any part of the myelin sheath or nerve fiber is interrupted by scar tissue, nerve impulses traveling to and from the brain and spinal cord are distorted or incomplete, producing the variety of symptoms that raise a red flag for heat therapies. Among these are numbness, tingling, weakness, spasticity and unsteadiness of a limb. Fever, hot baths, sun exposure, and stress have all been associated with triggering or exacerbating an attack. Thanks for your contribution.
"I enjoyed your article in this month's Massage Today on hot stone therapy. I practice in Florida and as of March of this year my liability carrier (International Massage Association) announced that due to the increase in claims due to burns, they will no longer cover hot stone therapy. I have talked to other massage therapist with different carriers and they have had the same response. I've also noticed in various spa advertisements that they have dropped hot stone therapy from their ads as well, and one has changed from hot stone to warm stone.
"I have wanted to take a course for some time now but am shying away from doing so because of the change in policy. My question to you is, if the client signs a consent form and ends up with a burn and the therapist is not covered, what the legal ramifications would be. Of course this would have to happen now! Thanks for your input and I look forward to your forthcoming articles."
It appears as though your current massage malpractice insurance policy no longer meets your individual needs. I don't give legal advice, but I do know it's never wise to gamble with one's livelihood by carrying a policy that does not cover all the modalities you practice. It may be time to switch insurance carriers.
"I think you have pointed out a lot of great things in your article about hot stones. I would have liked to have seen something about the hygiene, i.e., how to care for the stones, cleaning and sanitation, since the stones are kept in the perfect environment for bacteria to flourish."
Thank you for your response. You bring up a crucial issue. Due to the increase in bacterial and virus outbreaks over the last decade, the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) has put a major emphasis on hand washing and routine sanitary procedures, especially in health care settings. Hospital and clinical settings are a major cause of the spread of many of these "super bugs." Unlike the common cold or a flu virus, these new super bugs spread by direct skin-to-skin contact or with contaminated objects. Carelessness or lack of proper sanitation procedures may make the massage therapist a perfect route for transmission of infection.
According to the South Carolina MRSA Infection Protection Act: "Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a common staph infection which is resistant to many antibiotics and which is increasingly prevalent in health care settings. A study published in the 2007 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, found that MRSA infections occur in approximately 94,000 persons each year and are associated with approximately 19,000 deaths; approximately eighty-six percent are health care associated."
In our practices, we have an obligation to ensure each client is protected from these "super bugs" with the safest routine clinical procedures. Different practitioners have their own unique way of sanitizing and/or cleaning their stones and massage tools. Some boil their stones in salt water or wipe with alcohol, others scrub the tool with soap and hot water. I've even heard of therapists using the dishwasher to sanitize the stones. With all the different methods of sanitation what is the safest standard procedure?
One of my teachers, Jenny Ray at Sacred Stone Therapy, has provided me with the latest information on sanitary procedures from the Geothermal Therapy Association (GTA). According to Ray, "The CDC has recently approved GTA recommendations as sufficient for protecting the client from H1N1, HIV AIDS, MRSA and other staph infections. The recommendations are as follows:
Stones should be washed as soon as possible after treatment, as the longer the oils and bacteria stay on, the harder they may be to remove. The critical issue is that the antiseptic routine must be done between each individual client. For more information, refer to the GTA Web site at www.stonewalkersassociation.com which will soon be moving to www.geothermaltherapy.com.
Join the conversation
Comments are encouraged, but you must follow our User Agreementcomments powered by Disqus
Keep it civil and stay on topic. No profanity, vulgar, racist or hateful comments or personal attacks. Anyone who chooses to exercise poor judgement will be blocked. By posting your comment, you agree to allow MPA Media the right to republish your name and comment in additional MPA Media publications without any notification or payment.