A Resting of the Soul
In my pursuit of being a skilled health care provider, I focus on reading journals, attending classes, staying current on medicinal research, and choosing the correct billing codes. However, most of us would never have started down this career path if there wasn't something more.
End of Life Treatment
TCM looks death in the face. We do not camouflage it as if it were poisonous. "We must allow our patients to die but we cannot allow them to perish," was my first lesson the day I met my teacher as a teenager.
The Secondary Insurance Plan
I have a patient that has Medicare, but also has a secondary insurance plan that does cover acupuncture. How do I bill Medicare to get a denial so that I may bill this secondary payer?
Blockchain Health Records?
Keeping data secure has become a nightmare for the average consumer. Just consider general user account hacks on Yahoo (3 billion records compromised), eBay (145 million records compromised) and Facebook (87 million records compromised), to health record breaches involving Anthem Blue Cross (78 million records compromised) and TRICARE (almost 5 million records compromised).
Art of the Associateship: It's OK to Trust, But Verify
Trust is a valuable part of any business relationship. It serves as the foundation for all business operations and ultimately long-term success for owners, employees and customers. This is especially true in the world of health care.
Reducing Hip, Knee & Shoulder Replacements (Part 2)
In the first article in this series, "Early Detection Reduces Hip, Knee, & Shoulder Replacements," I described time tested screening procedures and perspectives as indicators of when to encourage your patients to seek further medical evaluation.
Autoimmunity, Gut Health and Diet: Connect the Dots
According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), autoimmune disease is recognized in approximately 24 million individuals in the U.S., consisting of more than 80 various disorders that contribute to the top 10 causes of death in female children and women of all age groups.
Doc, Are You a Social Media Holdout? Your Future Is Now
Whether you like it or not, to compete in any business, even chiropractic, you really should know and consider using social media. It is no longer a small, sleepy, local world we live in; it has become a far-reaching community.
Confessions of a Former Drug Rep: Statins Are Endangering Your Overweight Patients
As I sit at my desk on the sixth anniversary of my successful liver transplant, I can't help but reflect on what caused that life-threatening ordeal. Looking back on my personal situation, I want to offer my insight into what is happening routinely to many patients.
Why Take X-Rays When You Already Have an MRI?
Let's clear up the issue regarding the efficacy of plain-film studies when an MRI study has already been performed. I review imaging studies primarily for chiropractors, and often their patients have been to other health care providers before finding their way to a DC.
#TechPain: Causes, Solutions
For the past several decades, the science of ergonomics has blossomed. The workplace is much safer and life is generally more pleasant thanks to the application of ergonomic principles.
The Certified Practitioner
Certified Chinese herb practitioners often identify themselves with the credentials "LAc" (Licensed acupuncturist).
Help Shape the New Neck Pain Best Practices Guideline
The Clinical Compass (originally the Council on Guidelines and Practice Parameters – CCGPP) has issued a call for interested chiropractic clinicians to help shape a new best practices guideline for chiropractic care of neck pain.
News in Brief
WFC Among Founding Members of Global Rehab Alliance; HealthSource Selects GoChiroTV as Exclusive Digital Signage Partner; Western States' Online Degree Programs Among Best in the Nation; Logan University, University of Missouri-St. Louis Forge Partnership.
Facebook Marketing 101
Many of the health care practitioners we work with have smaller practices. The provider tends to wear many hats – office manager, salesperson and healer.
It's All About That Ki
As an industry are we shifting too much toward a Western mind set? We strive to understand how acupuncture works using imaging and extensive studies. We spend numerous hours of our training learning Western medicine and learning to speak their language. What happened to our core though?
A Bold Strategy to Take Chiropractic to New Heights
Building public awareness of an entire profession requires strategic planning – especially when it pertains to the exploration of ground-breaking marketing tactics that target new audiences with key messaging about the value of chiropractic care.
NCCAOM: A Route to National Certification
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) is offering a route to achieve national certification—without having to take any of the NCCAOM exams. This is specifically for California licensed acupuncturists that meet the eligibility requirements.
Trending: CBD / Hemp Oil
A recent survey of DCs regarding cannabidiol (CBD) / hemp oil provides food for thought as to the viability of CBD-based products as a component of chiropractic patient care. Here are some observations from the executive summary of the survey:
"Community Care" for Vets: It's Really a Big Deal!
As a preamble, while I regrettably never served in the military, I have the highest respect for those who did and those who currently serve.
Why the Automatic Denials for Modifiers 25 and 59?
Your experience is one shared by many chiropractic providers who bill through those plans. It appears to be the national trend, but by far is more prominent in Texas and Illinois.
The Classical Texts & Integrative Medicine
The acupuncture profession has been undergoing many changes in the past years. There has been a shift towards a more integrative approach to medicine as more hospitals include integrative departments.
UnitedHealthcare Can't Seem to Keep Chiropractic Down
AA decade ago, UnitedHealthcare announced changes to its chiropractic services policy that declared manipulative therapy for headache unproven.
Vaccines & Autism (Part 1)
It turns out chronic inflammation is the driver of autism expression. Unfortunately, those who emotionally embrace the vaccine issue rarely, if ever, consider this relationship, which hinders a rational view of the vaccine issue.
Treating Pain With Nutrition
Back in 1910, when D.D. Palmer published The Chiropractor's Adjuster and introduced the world to what he called the "triad of health" – thoughts, trauma and toxins – he explained that the body can only be made optimally healthy if all three aspects of health are addressed.
Does Dairy Cause Dampness?
The topic of dairy consumption was brought up at a scalp acupuncture seminar I recently attended.
CBD for Athletes: The Advantages of Cannibidiol
For athletes, pain is often part of their sport or activity. And to a certain extent, it is to be expected. However, after pushing themselves to the limit, soreness and fatigue set in, hampering their ability to perform and recover.
Valuable Adjunctive Therapies
Based on the latest CDC statistics, more than 795,000 Americans have strokes per year, 140,000 of which are lethal. Approximately 87 percent of all strokes are ischemic with an estimated health care and missed work cost of $34 billion annually.1
August, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 08
IMA Owner Says He "Sabotaged" the Business
Blames Depression, Says Failing Company Owes $600,000
By Ramon G. McLeod, Editor-in-Chief and Christie Bondurant
Will Green, the owner and founder of the International Massage Association (IMA), a business that was once a major insurer for the massage therapy community, said Wednesday (July 21) that he "began to sabotage" the association last year, owes his insurance broker "about $600,000," and stopped making payments on insurance premiums.
The e-mail, sent to the association's members, was in apparent response to a Massage Today story ("What Became of IMA", July 19) that described the severe financial troubles that have befallen the association.
Green has refused to respond to numerous phone calls requesting an interview on the story, including three calls made Thursday, July 22. In one of those calls, the person answering the phone said he was "out of town" for the day.
In the e-mail sent to IMA members, Green makes a series of admissions about the company's apparent collapse.
"I am not faultless. I began to sabotage the business through hurt and anger last year." He blames the "sabotage" on depression and says he wished he "had gotten some help because depression is a subtle destroyer."
Confirming one of the major findings of the original Massage Today story, Green says "I owe (his former) insurance broker about $600,000." He says that he is trying to sell off real estate to "pay that debt."
The e-mail further states that on April 22, the association's insurance broker cancelled policies. In an interview with Massage Today last week, Bret VanLeeuven, owner of IMA's primary insurance broker, Utah-based Stratus Insurance, Inc., said that Stratus had indeed cancelled the policies because "he owes us close to seven figures."
In trying to explain what happened to the money and to the association, Green in the e-mail says that he discovered in July 2009 that issues had arisen over a claim made to one of his non-massage insurance businesses.
In researching the claim, which was made by someone "not in our database," he "found out (that) our insurance policy was being sold by another insurance broker with our name on the policy for an inflated wholesale price."
He said that this had allegedly been going on for four years.
"My friends at the insurance brokerage had been raping me economically since 2004. I was hurt and angry. I found out from the U.S. Justice Department Insurance Fraud Division that this was not legal."
Nevertheless, Green said, "I did not pursue a legal remedy. I went into a depression without even realizing it." He also claims that he has been cooperating with the FBI for three years in an insurance fraud case and that "one of the parties" in the case has plead guilty.
Green said it was depression resulting from the July 2009 discovery that led to his failure to keep up with payments: "I stopped paying insurance premiums and went into a tailspin."
The e-mail doesn't say which insurance broker allegedly mishandled the policy he describes as discovering in July 2009. Stratus was still doing work until April 22, when Stratus cancelled work for Green.
In interviews last week, VanLeeuven insisted that Stratus was not involved in "any scheme."
The relationship between Green and VanLeeuven began around 2004, VanLeeuven said. Stratus, like other insurance brokers of its type, acquires the policies that insure the premium payers from liability claims.
Earlier this year, sources present at meetings where Green tried to sell IMA said that Green suggested that Stratus had failed to properly handle policies in several of the years since 2004, an allegation that VanLeeuven strongly denied.
"Every premium that was collected was passed on to the appropriate parties," he said.
"Our business has been audited many times, we held up our part of the contract," he said. "And the bottomline is that as far as Stratus is concerned, every claim that was made was paid. There have been no complaints about unpaid valid claims."
VanLeeuven, who is travelling overseas, was unavailable to comment on this story.
End Game for IMA?
Left unstated in the e-mail from Green was one very large question: What happened to the $600,000?
What is clear, however, is that Green is scrambling for cash because, as he says in his e-mail: he is trying to sell off property to cover it. It is also clear that IMA is finished. In his e-mail Green says it will cease to exist at the end of 2010.
Editor's Note: If you have had issues with either of IMA's insurance operations, please contact
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