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Massage Today
March, 2016, Vol. 16, Issue 03

Letter to the Editor

By Michelle Lisenbee

In the January 2016 issue of Massage Today magazine, an article by Martha Menard caught my eye. It was entitled, "Integration: Team-Based Care and Collaborative Practice are the Future of Healthcare." When I read the title, my first thought was, "Hey! We're already doing that!"

"We" are Casey Health Institute, located in Gaithersburg, Maryland. Created in 2011, under the leadership of Dr. David Fogel and Dr. Ilana Bar-Levav, with the vision of "creating a new model of integrative health care that transforms the patient/provider relationship in the context of a non-profit, community based health center. Casey Health is working to advance the way medicine in America is practiced, using innovative economic and medical models of care. We are building a team based collaborative culture in which people will value and actively engage in their own health and well-being." ( I heard about Casey Health several years ago and came to work with them in August of 2015. I am a Registered Nurse and Board Certified Massage Therapist. I currently serve Casey Health in my capacity as a nurse, but bring my massage skills as well.

Our practice is truly a collaborative one and unique in its approach to health care. Every day, our team of providers strives to create an environment of healing for the people that come to us. At this time, we offer integrative primary care, acupuncture, chiropractic, behavioral health, naturopathic medicine, nutrition, massage therapy, reiki, yoga therapy and health coaching all under one roof.

We have weekly staff meetings where providers can discuss patient care, ask questions, think through treatment plans, observe outcomes, and make recommendations. Our providers sit together daily in our "team room," where they are available to each other throughout the day for "in-the-moment" consults or questions. Everyone is strongly encouraged to bring new ideas to the table and we experiment often in an attempt to discover better ways of caring for our patients.

We truly believe that providing conscious, collaborative, team-based care that focuses on the patient as a whole person will produce better outcomes for everyone and is the future of healthcare. It makes me happy to see this model gaining recognition among other disciplines like massage therapy, and to see magazines like yours encouraging therapists to find ways to collaborate with other integrative practitioners in their area. Keep up the good work!

Michelle Lisenbee, RN, LMT (Board Certified)
Casey Health Institute
Gaithersburg, MD 20877


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