Good News for a Change! I received a private email from an RMT who was wondering if there’s any good news about the profession. Plenty! Here are just 10:
i) Popularity. With estimates suggesting 35% of Canadians had tried massage therapy*, some US hospitals incorporating massage therapy for patients on-site, and massage ranked as the number two CAM application (behind chiropractic) in public utilization, we stand far better in public opinion than many other health disciplines.
ii) Size – with over 10,000 RMTs in Ontario and estimated 20-25,000 RMTs across Canada (and 10x this number in the U.S.A) there are a lot of us. In fact our profession is larger than chiropractic. If we could harness the will of all those RMTs we could really do something dynamic.
iii) Proof – research studies continue to support massage therapy in the relief of pain and MSK dysfunction, but other applications in mood/depression, improved sleep and palliative care expand the health care benefits of massage therapy.
iv) Staying power – massage has origins in numerous cultures, thousands of years of history and has survived wars, plagues, natural and economic disasters…it’s just not going away.
v) Endorsement – massage therapists are endorsed by many gatekeeper health disciplines, athletes and celebrities, and even some members of government and the insurance industry…not to mention all the people of various vocations and situations we provide care for on a day-to-day basis. They love us!
vi) Supplement – massage therapy services are supplemented by many employee benefit plans and for low-income populations in British Columbia under health care services. Worker’s compensation, autoinsurance…there are a number of ways people can lower the cost of access to RMT care.
vii) There’s a strong opportunity to collaborate with other Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) professions in government lobbying, insurance reimbursement negotiations, training and public/media relations. See my article http://www.massagetherapycanada.com/content/view/1857/
viii) Multiple delivery models – you’ll find massage therapists working in rehab clinics, spas, fitness/athletic clubs, workplace wellness programs and RMT-specialized workspaces. The marketplace needs massage in a number of settings and this creates very interesting and potentially lucrative opportunities for RMTs!
ix) Inexpensive – dollar-for-dollar, massage therapy intervention costs less than many more invasive procedures. If health care was privatized, we’d see cost-sensitive patients flocking to RMTs for greater bang for the buck (and shorter recovery times).
x) Alliance – the Canadian Massage Therapist Alliance represents 6 provinces and one territory, with mandates to advocate for RMTs’ interests to the insurance industry, forward research initiatives and support regulation. Once this organization is fully supported by all the provincial RMT associations, duplicity of services will decline and benefits to all RMTs will go up.
So, here are 10 great things to enjoy and appreciate about our profession. What can you add?