Update: collaborative gathering of major massage organizations

A December 20, 2013 note from Leslie Young, vice president for communications of the Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals, provided an update entitled Coalition of National Massage Therapy Organizations Meets for Collaboration. Representatives from seven organizations that participate in the Coalition of National Massage Therapy Organizations met December 11, 2013 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Participants spent “five hours of constructive exchange” reacting to The Core: Entry-Level Massage Education Blueprint and a companion document, including discussion about project implementation. The documents will remain in draft form pending review by the boards of directors of the constituent organizations anticipated to take place in January 2014.

Other priorities topics that were discussed were: [Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation] COMTA research on the value of programmatic accreditation; a presentation of the Alliance for Massage Therapy Education’s final report on Core Competencies for Massage Therapy Teachers; and a re-examination of the original Coalition priorities formed in September 2011, a discussion about professional entry examinations; and a COMTA/Alliance proposal for a 2015 joint educational congress. The following massage therapy organizations participate in the Coalition: Alliance for Massage Therapy Education (AFMTE), American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA), Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals (ABMP), Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA), Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards (FSMTB), Massage Th

by John Weeks, Publisher/Editor of The Integrator Blog News & Reports

Update: collaborative gathering of major massage organizations

A December 20, 2013 note from Leslie Young, vice president for communications of the Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals, provided an update entitled Coalition of National Massage Therapy Organizations Meets for Collaboration. Representatives from seven organizations that participate in the Coalition of National Massage Therapy Organizations met December 11, 2013 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Participants spent “five hours of constructive exchange” reacting to The Core: Entry-Level Massage Education Blueprint and a companion document, including discussion about project implementation. The documents will remain in draft form pending review by the boards of directors of the constituent organizations anticipated to take place in January 2014.

Other priorities topics that were discussed were: [Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation] COMTA research on the value of programmatic accreditation; a presentation of the Alliance for Massage Therapy Education’s final report on Core Competencies for Massage Therapy Teachers; and a re-examination of the original Coalition priorities formed in September 2011, a discussion about professional entry examinations; and a COMTA/Alliance proposal for a 2015 joint educational congress. The following massage therapy organizations participate in the Coalition: Alliance for Massage Therapy Education (AFMTE), American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA), Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals (ABMP), Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA), Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards (FSMTB), Massage Therapy Foundation (MTF) and National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork (NCBTMB). The report on a June 2012 gathering is here.

Update: massive Foundations of Naturopathic Medicine project rounds bend toward 2014 completion

The Elsevier text that will grow out of the Foundations of Naturopathic Medicine Project, led by executive editor and project visionary Pamela Snider, ND and her executive editor team, is certainly the most highly anticipated book for the naturopathic medicine profession. Many believe that the reach and impact of this effort to “codify” naturopathic knowledge will flow beyond the profession’s boundaries. Involved in this now 7-year old project is an international, multidisciplinary team of over 300 authors, plus a dozen agencies and institutions in the profession and a raft of sponsors. A December 2014 update shares that 99% of copy has been submitted, of which 75% has been through scientific review, and just over 50% medical editor review. The team is shooting for completion in 2014. A report from November 2014 meetings with key editors and authors shares post-publication plans including a Post-Doctoral Naturopathic Foundations Fellowship and Residency Program, and an online learning initiative. Some of the content is visible via a download of this Summary Book from the First International Editors Retreat.

Comment: Via a close collegial relationship with Snider, I have observed the mushrooming and intriguing ambition of this project over the years of its development. The triple task of engaging something so basic as “codification” of her re-emerging discipline’s concepts and practices, plus what Snider calls “integrating modern and traditional models and concepts with frontier science” while also herding scores upon scores of independent minded cats from multiple disciplines and bringing them toward a unified editorial voice – well, any one of these could make Hercules faint of heart. Here’s hoping that 2014 will see this volume in Elsevier’s hands – if for no other reason than to free up Snider as soon as possible for more active re-engagement in the policy and interprofessional work in which she also excels.

Data on A4M and the evolution of “anti-aging medicine”

An organization that by its “anti” name is directly opposed to a core tenet of much of integrative health and medicine practice is the “anti-aging medicine” movement led by the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine (A4M). The group recently completed its “21st Annual World Congress on Anti-Aging, Regenerative and Aesthetic Medicine.” Their post-conference release boasts of 3500 attendees and over 300 exhibitors.  Of these, 500 attended “advanced education Fellowship modules” which were described only as “Modules I, V, XVI, XXII, XXIII, Integrative Cancer Therapy Module VIII and Sexual Health Certification Module.” Among speakers well-known to the integrative health community was pioneer Jonathan Wright, MD. Among program titles: “Advances in Body Contouring” and “Testosterone Deficiency and Therapy in Men.” The organization “offer(s) Board Certifications and Fellowship Training Programs in various disciplines ranging from anti-aging, regenerative and functional medicine to such disciplines as aesthetic medicine, skin cancer and stem cell therapy, in order to lead the industry by establishing best practice standards in these areas.”

Comment: As one whose attraction to this field was based, in part, on the tenet of a practitioners’ respect for aiding and abetting the nature’s processes, this use of natural agents and practices as “anti-aging” has always been a little counter-revolutionary; or, better said, “back-sliding” into the anti-orientation of regular medicine. As a person who is now 20 years older than when I began watching the emergence of the A4M field, well, glancing in the mirror and feeling the morning aches stimulates a less ideological response…