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Wisconsin Exam in the Spotlight
You've passed your national boards with flying colors, including Part IV, the practical examination, at a combined cost of more than $3,000.
History Repeating Itself in Wisconsin?
Thirteen years ago, the Wisconsin Chiropractic Association (WCA) "agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission allegations that [the association] orchestrated a conspiracy among WCA members to increase prices for chiropractic services and to boycott third-party payers to obtain higher reimbursement rates."
Business Building: What's Your Strategy?
I know some in our profession love to debate about whether or not spinal curvatures change as a result of our chiropractic adjustment, but I have a question that hits a little more close to the belt than that: Are chiropractors capable of change?
The Spirits of the Points: The Gall Bladder Official
The Gall Bladder is known as The Official of Decision Making and Judgment. In any given day, this Official makes countless decisions – conscious and unconscious, which influence every aspect of our being.
You are What You Eat Part II: Integrative Protocols
In the previous installment of this article I discussed important ideas concerning gastrointestinal health and foundational ideas from TCM, which can provide key insights into creating effective protocols for healing the gut.
Chiropractic Research: A Moral Issue
This year I've had the opportunity to go to three great chiropractic research conferences; the ACC-RAC, the Fédération Internationale de Chiropratique du Sport (FICS) Congress and the World Federation of Chiropractic Congress.
News in Brief
Cancer Treatment Centers of America Continues Support of Chiropractic; ACBOH Announces 2013 Practical, Written Exam Dates; PCORI Approves Funding for Research on Spinal Stenosis; Macquarie University to Cease Offering Chiropractic Program.
Covering Chiropractic as a Profession, Not a Single Service
Recently Dynamic Chiropractic published a front-page article about various state essential health benefits and referred to Oregon and four other states not currently providing chiropractic as a covered benefit.
Telecommuting and Technology: Ergonomic and Worker's Comp Considerations
As our world becomes more and more reliant on technology, equipment becomes more dependable and we become increasingly more comfortable with e-mail, the fax machine, the Internet and the smartphone, it is becoming easier and easier to work away from the office.
Calcium Supplements and Mortality
When the National Institutes of Health's AARP Diet and Health Study reported that men who took calcium supplements had a higher risk of dying from cardiovascular disease compared those who didn't, it was the third large cohort in six months with alarming findings regarding calcium supplements.
Energy is a hot commodity. Society pays dearly for it and for the expertise of those who know how to cultivate it.
Helping Infertility Patients with the Spirit Essence
As many of you know, when it comes to treating infertility, we are dealing with a patient population that is, generally speaking, in emotional turmoil. These patients often experience fear, anxiety, despair, hopelessness, grief and anger.
Helping Patients Through Pregnancy Loss
There is a lot of focus in the acupuncture world on fertility and helping women get pregnant. It's exhilarating to hear the news that a patient is expecting a baby. The other side of that is pregnancy loss. That includes abortion, miscarriage or stillbirth.
Spinal-Cord Injuries: Saying No to Steroids
With steroids, epidural and otherwise, in the news lately for their overuse when treating back pain (and their danger when tainted by fungal meningitis), it was high time for a policy change, and we've got one, from the Congress of Neurological Surgeons and the American Association of Neurological Surgeons.
The Pallof Press for Core Stability Evaluation
Many people become injured because of instability, weakness and poor neural-sequencing patterns in the core. Lack of bracing and support from the inner core cylinder during coronal and transverse movements makes the body vulnerable to compensation injuries.
Economics of Complementary/Integrative Care
Although this column doesn't usually feature a book review, we're going outside of our usual public health format to discuss a new book written by Patricia Herman ND, PhD.
Let's face it – patient evaluation takes time. Unless you are really into the diagnostic evaluation game, you probably have found the formal exam protocol tedious if not downright annoying.
Exercises for Back Pain: Low-Compression Training Program
This program is intended for two groups of people: 1) those who want to engage in resistance exercises for the major regions of their body without developing back pain in the process; and 2) those who already have back pain and want to do resistance exercises, but consistently re-irritate their back when trying to do so.
Herbal Medicine: Go Mainstream
When it comes to practicing herbal medicine in a mainstream setting, there are a number of important points to understand when it comes to prescribing formulas. Some important questions to ask are - what method of prescribing and dispensing is most effective in this setting?
In a previous column, I discussed the history and definition of evidence-based practice (EBP), and expressed concerns with how the concept has been narrowly construed by some academics and payers.
Repeating Bone-Density Tests
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends that women older than age 65 undergo bone-density testing. However, organizations in general have not stated when repeat bone-density testing should be done.
There Are No Secrets: Treating Complicated Conditions with TCM
Including standardized extra points, there are just over 400 acupuncture points on the body. You get 400 and I get 400 - same. Yet, time and time again treatment protocols are coveted as if they were some secret formula only intended for the right and privileged.
Medical Payola (Part 2)
Not only has Medtronic made billions selling expensive screws and hardware for highly controversial spine fusions, but a Senate investigation also found Medtronic felt compelled to write and edit medical journal articles attributed to outside physicians that downplayed the risks of the company's best-selling bone graft, Infuse.
Peer Points: Stories of Practice Success
When patients go see Arizona-based acupuncturist Jing Liu, it is to get top care from an practitioner well versed in all aspects of Traditional Chinese Medicine.
June, 2012, Vol. 12, Issue 06
CA Massage Board to Review Expenses Policy
Will Board Members Continue to Vote on their own Expenses?
By Kathryn Feather, Senior Associate Editor
The Chair of the California Massage Therapy Council, Dixie Wall, has issued a statement saying the board would "review it's non-staff expense reimbursement policy at the June board meeting to ensure that the policy reflects CAMTC's commitment to fiscal responsibility." Wall also stated the approved policy would be available via the website after the meeting at www.camtc.org.The review is in response to the controversies (see article "The CAMTC Money Grab.") surrounding expenses for the American Massage Conference (AMC), which was held in April in San Diego.
"When CAMTC first started planning the staffing for the AMC, the total conference attendance was estimated between 2,000 to 3,000 individuals. CAMTC planned accordingly by proposing that more staff attend to handle the number of participants," said Wall. "Later, when it was discovered that massage professional attendance would be closer to 1,000, CAMTC adjusted the staffing plan accordingly."
Wall said that now "only three directors intend to request reimbursement for travel expenses" and not the seven (six actually voted, one was not present) who originally voted for their own expenses "Four of the seven spent their own time and money to attend and assist with this conference," said Wall. "The way in which the motion was framed was unclear because it gave the impression that the number of Directors attending the conference was not capped and that reimbursement was unlimited. In fact, that was never the intent."
As reported previously in Massage Today, 11 members of the California Massage Therapy Council Board (CAMTC), voted at their Tuesday, April 10, 2012 meeting to reimburse travel expenses for those board members planning to attend the American Massage Conference (AMC), which was set to open eight days later.
Six of those who voted "yes" approved their own expenses, the seventh, Judi Calvert, was not present for the vote; two others were not present, three voted no and two abstained.
"I was not surprised that the motion passed despite a few 'No' votes and at least one abstention. I was surprised that several board members for whom Mr. Netanel was requesting expense reimbursement voted in favor of the resolution instead of abstaining," said said CAMTC Board Member and ABMP Chairman Bob Benson.
The invitation to attend the AMC and to claim reimbursement from the CAMTC was made to all current board members with no cap on how many could request reimbursement.
Duty Free Trip
Seven board members submitted their expenses for attending the event prior to the Board meeting. CAMTC also sent six staffers to the event, primarily to man the organization's booth, but at the time of the vote, no specific duties or responsibilities were given to the board members who indicated that they planned on attending.
However, after a story about the expenses appeared on MassageToday.com, CAMTC CEO Ahmos Netanel submitted a list of duties board members would be expected to perform. These duties included helping staff answer questions at the booth, manning a separate table from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday in the student area during "Career Day," being available to answer questions during a free presentation to AMC attendees and being available throughout the convention hall and at the Saturday evening Gala to meet certificate holders and answer any questions.
"The main strategy here is not to be a static vendor that just sits at a booth," Netanel said. "Our outreach approach is to be dynamic and interactive by literally reaching out well beyond the confines of our booth, to optimize the impact of our participation."
The reimbursement agenda item, brought up during the boards teleconference meeting, was titled: "Board member's attendance at the American Massage Conference." Netanel introduced the item by suggesting that while there was ample staff to provide support at the CAMTC booth, there were expected to be a large number of attendees and he was "concerned there will not be enough help." However, critics on the board contended that specific responsibilities were not discussed or defined in Netanel's introduction of this item. Board member Joe Bob Smith then made a motion to reimburse those who assisted with CAMTC activities and outreach at the American Massage Conference. The motion was seconded by CAMTC board member Roberta Rolnick who cited the necessity of "accessibility to the stakeholders and helping to improve the reputation of the CAMTC" as reasons for attendance and justification for reimbursement.
When asked about reimbursement policy and if this would be apply to other conferences, Netanel referenced first a 2009 and then a 2010 reimbursement policy passed by the board, which states in part, "Directors may receive such reimbursement of expenses as the Board may determine by resolution to be fair and reasonable at the time that the resolution is adopted." However, some board members didn't think the policy applied to conferences and conventions, only board meetings. "The motion that was passed does not incorporate any caps or guidelines at all. It does not limit the number of directors who can go or what they can request for reimbursement," said board member Mike Schroeder. "For example, the motion provides for full per diem even though the banquet is free and even though nothing is occurring on Thursday other than a golf tournament."
Three board members voted against the motion, including two board members who spoke publicly in opposition to the motion, Bob Benson of ABMP and Mike Schroeder of the American Massage Council. "I am against this motion as I think it is a bad idea and could be viewed from the outside as a boondoggle. I don't believe it is appropriate to bring this up before the board at the last minute, right before the AMC. The Board doesn't represent CAMTC, only the Chair and the CEO can speak for CAMTC. This will cost between $600 and $1100 per board member with no cap on the number of board members who can attend or cap on the size of the reimbursement that a board member can request. I don't think having a group of 'roving ambassadors' is the best use of our funds. I think we should discuss this at the next board meeting and put a policy in place so there can be no appearance of a misuse of funds," said CAMTC board member Mike Schroeder.
"When I heard that Ahmos Netanel planned to have four CAMTC staff members present at the conference plus at least seven board members, I suggested that felt like overkill, said board member Bob Benson. "ABMP, for example, a major sponsor of the Conference, plans to have four individuals present to lead educational sessions and to host our booth. I support CAMTC taking advantage of a good opportunity at the American Massage Conference to interact with California massage practitioners and educate them about the benefits of CAMTC certification. CAMTC's approved outreach/marketing budget for 2012 includes sufficient funds to support staff attendance at the conference. I voted 'No' on the resolution because I felt allocating additional funds to permit seven board members to supplement CAMTC staff at the conference was excessive and not reasonably justifiable."
"The American Massage Council is very opposed to this unwarranted expenditure of CAMTC funds. Our members worked very hard to pay their dues and the money shouldn't be spent sending board members to conferences where they have no responsibilities," said Schroeder, also owner and co-founder of the American Massage Council.
While efforts were made to contact each of the board members who voted in favor of the motion, only two board members spoke in favor of their attendance and reimbursement. "I'm attending the AMC conference at the request of Ahmos Netanel and to network on behalf of CAMTC," said Board member Keith Grant. "In short, I believe it behooves CAMTC to be seen as accessible and not remote--almost literally 'in touch' with those regulated, particularly given several factors in the start up of CAMTC: a much greater response that was envisioned for the first six months; having to create procedure to handle schools and transcripts that weren't as claimed; and having to fight back against the California Police Chief's Association's initial attempt to dismantle CAMTC. Again, in short, it was a rough start and I believe there are still some people out that need a chance to vent and be listened to face-to-face."
"The venue provides a valuable opportunity to network with influential individuals from around the country who have expressed a strong interest in California's unique massage regulation; in short, a chance to learn, teach and network in a setting that rarely comes to our state," said Board member Mark Dixon. "As the first meeting of this type attended by the CAMTC, I believe the small investment is a sound one that will place experienced, knowledgeable professionals before an important audience. Even so, as a volunteer, I stand to lose considerably more in income than the reimbursement. Moreover, I attended last month's AMTA-CA Chapter Educational Conference, representing CAMTC in continuous meetings throughout the weekend. I received zero reimbursement."
The seven board members requesting reimbursement were: Mark Dixon, Deborah Tuck, Roberta Rolnick, Judi Calvert (Calvert did not participate in the teleconference and did not vote), Keith Grant(who ultimately did not attend the conference), Elna Leonardo and Christian Pezza.
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