November 2012 John Weeks Integrator Round-up covering the topics of:  Policy, Business, Integrative Centers, Academics, Natural Products, Professions, and People.

A profitable integrative mental health venue: A look at Scott Shannon’s Wholeness Center (and a forthcoming book)

Integrative psychiatrist Scott Shannon, DO is a past president of the American Holistic Medical Association and of the American Board of Integrative Holistic Medicine. Shannon’s clinical base is a new venture is his For Collins, Colorado-based Wholeness Center. Shannon describes it as a “fully integrative mental health clinic.” The clinical mix includes 12 practitioners: 2 psychiatrists, 2 naturopathic doctors, 2 family therapists, plus onev each of: psychologist, physician assistant, nurse practitioner, MT/body worker, licensed acupuncturist, biofeedback therapist/yoga teacher and psychiatric nurse educator. Shannon notes that the Center’s team “just celebrated our 2nd birthday and have been profitable this past year.” The business model includes contracts from “a number of local agencies.” Some of the Center’s providers accept insurance. Most work in the space as independent contractors. Shannon notes that one shared characteristic is that all “are dedicated to our vision.” Shannon’s forthcoming book from Norton, Mental Health for the Whole Child elaborates both philosophy and model. This center appears to be the largest and most comprehensive integrative mental health program in the US.

Comment: The Wholeness Center has two key elements of profitability and success in a center like this. One is using a contract model to keep the incentive for bringing business with the individual practitioner. The second is shared vision, which keep re-knitting the centripetal tendencies back into a whole.

Mayo Clinic offers module to train massage therapists for work in hospitals

A feature in Massage Today entitled “Hospitals Embracing Massage” reports that Mayo Clinic in Minnesota has developed a course for massage therapists to train them for participation on hospital teams. The article describes the Mayo program as divided into three modules and requiring two months to complete. Those admitted to the training must have previously completed a 500-hour minimum massage therapy education program. The Mayo program is offered twice a year with just 12 students in each. According to the article, the limit on participants is in place “to ensure that therapists receive close one-on-one instruction and a more comprehensive experience.”  Among content areas are: self-care exploration, a team-based approach to integrative health care and scope of practice, navigation and documentation in a medical record, establishing therapeutic relationships and treatment planning. To date, placement for therapists completing the instruction has reportedly been very good.

A feature in entitled reports that Mayo Clinic in Minnesota has developed a course for massage therapists to train them for participation on hospital teams. The article describes as divided into three modules and requiring two months to complete. Those admitted to the training must have previously completed a 500-hour minimum massage therapy education program. The Mayo program is offered twice a year with just 12 students in each. According to the article, the limit on participants is in place “to ensure that therapists receive close one-on-one instruction and a more comprehensive experience.”  Among content areas are: self-care exploration, a team-based approach to integrative health care and scope of practice, navigation and documentation in a medical record, establishing therapeutic relationships and treatment planning. To date, placement for therapists completing the instruction has reportedly been very good.

Comment: Mayo joins MD Anderson and Allina among major healthcare centers that have sought to fill a training gap through developing formal training programs for massage therapists in hospital-based treatment. It would be interesting to see the extent to which the competencies on which the program focuses are aligned with the Competencies for Optimal Practice in Integrated Environments developed in part through leaders of the massage field.