resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
An MD Who Understands the Opioid Epidemic
Doctors of chiropractic have an important role to play in ending the opioid epidemic and dealing with chronic pain by conservative means (see our top story in this issue) – but who's to blame for opioid dependence and abuse in the first place?
What You Say Isn't Always What Patients Hear
A few years ago, my aunt Edna (name changed for the purpose of this story) suffered a stroke. After a short hospital stay, she was transferred to a nursing home for rehabilitation. When she arrived at the nursing home, Edna requested a private room.
Multivitamin Supplement May Reduce Breast Cancer Recurrence
There is a great deal of controversy regarding the value of multiple vitamin supplements in cancer prevention.
Acupuncture Muscle Trigger Point and Oriental Medicine Sports Therapy
It is difficult to ascertain the internal condition of professional basketball player Lebron James during game one of the 2014 NBA finals, in which he developed debilitating muscle cramps that led to his premature removal from the game.
Kansas Achieves Licensing Law
Kansas Governor Sam Brownback signed House Bill 2615 into law on Friday, May 13, 2016. HB2615 includes provisions for the licensure of acupuncturists in the state of Kansas.
The Pertinent Negative
We all have to perform evaluations on patients. Most of us don't like doing it – exams take time, and worse it takes even more time after the evaluation to put together a narrative summary of the findings. Sometimes, this process becomes downright tedious.
Treating Hip & Groin Pain With Abdominal Release of Upper Lumbar Nerve Impingements
Have you encountered patients with groin and hip pain you can't seem to solve? You know it's not a worn-out hip; you suspect the pain is somehow connected to the spine. But somehow, you just can't help them break through.
Increasing the Value of Spine Care: CMS Approves New Low Back Pain Registry
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has approved the Spine IQ Low Back Pain Registry as a qualified clinical data registry for the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) in 2016.
A Long-Overdue Win for Oregon Medicaid Patients - and the Implications for Other States
Beginning July 1, 2016, Oregon Medicaid patients with spinal pain (cervical, thoracic, lumbar, pelvic) who are determined to be low risk based on a biopsychosocial assessment tool (STarT Back – Keele University) can receive four chiropractic visits per episode.
Beating the Odds: Interview With Para-Powerlifter Adeline Dumapong-Ancheta
Since October 2015, the FICS Foundation, the charitable organization affiliated with the International Federation of Sports Chiropractic (FICS), has been supporting disabled athletes internationally.
Sit or Stand? Analyzing a Mixed Message
I'm more than a bit confused. At my age, that seems to be a rather common occurrence. However, today more than ever, I'm getting a mixed message.
Insuring Quality Control in Herb Importation: An Interview with Wilson Lau
Wilson Lau is the vice president of Nuherbs, a Chinese herb importation company based in San Leandro, California. Before joining Nuherbs, he trained as a lawyer specializing in FDA law.
How to Stay Sane During the Elections: Understanding Through the Lens of Chinese Medicine
In Chinese Medicine philosophy, everything consists of Yin and Yang. The law of polar opposites – one cannot exist without its opposite.
Tai Chi Documentary Premier
First Run Features recently announced the world theatrical premiere of Barry Strugatz's documentary The Professor: Tai Chi's Journey West, which premiered last month at the Laemmle Music Hall in Los Angeles.
Acupuncture's Impact on the World
For several years, I have been hearing about the town of Rothenburg, Germany. It seemed just a dot on a map until I arrived. It is the home of the TCM Kongress which began in 1968. It has been held annually for 47 years and it has only missed one year.
AOM Hospital-Based Practice: A Future Reality?
The natural evolution of health care on the planet is integrative health. We may have some challenges ahead, but based on my research, all indicators are pointing in a positive direction. There seems to be an evolving consciousness among our patient population that is "getting it."
An Emerging Partnership Model
Maryland University of Integrative Health (MUIH) has educated integrative health and wellness practitioners for the last 40 years, originally as an acupuncture clinic and school. The institution's transformative, relationship-centered programs integrate traditional wisdom with contemporary science
Chronic Pain: Become Part of the Solution
I have lectured to more than 7,000 chiropractic physicians over the past five years regarding the chronic pain and opioid epidemic in this country.
Three Tips to Help You Analyze the Acupuncture Case Studies of the NCCAOM Exam
Confirm the answer quickly by the elimination method. Case study:
After two treatments for back pain, a patient presents for a third
session complaining of rapid breathing and wheezing that is made worse
during cold weather.
Believe it or not, an estimated one-third of your patients have eaten some form of fast food within 24 hours of their appointment with you.
Adventures with the San Jiao
Those of us who have been in practice for several decades relish the way meridians and points reveal new diagnostic clues and new insights. I love to encourage my students to see this as an adventure that goes way beyond the textbooks.
What's New in Phytonutrition: Mangifera Indica, "The King of Fruits"
One hundred percent pure Indian green mango fruit (mangifera indica), harvested at a special degree of ripeness for efficacy and taste, can now be concentrated as a phytonutrient nutraceutical powder.
June, 2011, Vol. 11, Issue 06
In the Shadows: Human Trafficking, Fraud and the Cost to the Massage Profession
By Kathryn Feather, Senior Associate Editor
For decades, the massage profession has battled the stereotype that it is a front for prostitution. While the occasional bad apple can still be found in the bunch, the profession has made significant strides in recent years to combat this false belief.Hospitals and health care centers nationwide have begun to embrace massage as a compliment to their traditional medical practices and most states have established licensing criteria for professionals who have the proper education and skills to become legitimate practitioners.
Nevertheless, criminals have continued to sully the profession's good name and in California an investigation by the state's certification board has unconvered their latest tactic: phony massage school transcripts.
Amazingly, prior to the investigation by California Massage Therapy Council (CAMTC), it was legal to sell a fake transcript in the state. Transcripts - along with criminal history records - are key credentials in the state's massage therapist certification system that allows therapists to practice legally.
The investigation began when the CAMTC discovered patterns in which certain "schools" seemed to have large numbers of graduating student with prostitution arrest records. Armed this and information from other sources, the CAMTC brought in an undercover investigator who would discover that these "graduates," mostly women of South Asian and South American descent, were part of a vast network of human traffickers profiting from prostitution.
The undercover investigator found that human traffickers were selling phony massage school transcripts so prostitutes could pose as legitimate therapists and work or operate massage parlors that are nothing more than fronts. The investigator told Massage Today that these suspected bogus "schools" were targeted based on tips, police information and an analysis of data collected by the CAMTC.
"Police departments who work with us, gave us every prostitution arrest along with the name of the schools they claimed they had gone to," said the investigator. Information was also obtained from the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork, as well as states like Texas that maintain close records of prostitution arrests.
Visit To a "School"
At a visit to one of these "schools," the investigator was taken to the back to meet with the Assistant School Director. "This one in particular looked nothing like a school. It was an ordinary house. Not to be stereotyping, but she looked like a madam with very provocative clothing and makeup. I told her I was interested in (buying a transcript) and she said 'yes, no problem' and asked me to come back in a few days with a check," said the investigator. "Some operated that way, at others, I was in and out with a transcript in two hours."
On another occasion, the investigator met with the director of a school whose ramshackle "office" was cluttered with what were clearly transcript templates and "stacks and stacks of photos of girls."
The investigator told Massage Today that in one waiting room, there were "many young women of Asian descent dressed provocatively." The investigator also said several of the bogus schools that came under scrutiny were also clearly houses of prostitution. "At this one place, it was pretty obvious they were conducting prostitution on the premises. The men who ran the place were lecherous and disgusting and had no qualms about commenting on my appearance," the investigator said.
"In one of the schools, I was in an office with a sliding door to the exterior. Men kept coming in that way saying they were there for massage appointments, but they looked and acted like johns," the investigator said.
Many of these "schools" not only created fake paperwork, but took fingerprints and included a photo of the "student" which the school then sent directly to the CAMTC for certification. Transcripts cost anywhere from $1,000 to $2,500 depending on the "school."
The CAMTC was established by the legislature in 2008 to provide a voluntary certification process for therapists. To obtain legal certification from the CAMTC as a Certified Massage Therapist in California, a person must prove they have 500 hours in classroom training from an accredited school and have a clean criminal record. They must also provide fingerprints and a photo as part of the application process. There are additional means of obtaining CAMTC certification. For a full explanation go to the to CAMTC website.
The Profession Acts
Urged on by the CAMTC and with major support from the Orange County (CA) District Attorney's Office, California State Senator Lou Correa has introduced legislation that would make providing fraudulent transcripts a misdemeanor subject to specific penalties. Meanwhile, the CAMTC is now refusing to accept transcripts from schools identified in the investigation as nothing more than diploma mills.
As introduced, Correa's Senate Bill 285 states: "This bill would provide that a person who provides a certificate, transcript, diploma or other document, or otherwise affirms that a person has received instruction in massage therapy knowing that the person has not received massage therapy instruction consistent with that documentation or affirmation is guilty of a misdemeanor and is subject to specified penalties. By creating a new crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program."
"The bill would require a law enforcement agency, for any person that is criminally prosecuted for a violation of law in connection with massage therapy, to provide to the Massage Therapy Organization information concerning the massage therapy instruction received by the person prosecuted."
SB 285 was referred to the Senate Committee on Public Safety and was scheduled for a hearing just as this issue went to press. Massage Today will continue to follow SB 285 as it makes its way through the legislative process.
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