Massage & Bodywork

January | February 2014

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HOW TO WORK WITH A CHIROPRACTOR When asked what important characteristics they consider when choosing a massage therapist, 44% of clients said "works in a professional office setting." Employee"). The chiropractor WHAT PATIENTS WANT may be responsible for Patients want massage combined with chiropractic. They don't care how penalties, interest, and back difficult it is to provide both specialties together and they also don't taxes if the worker is hired understand why their insurance doesn't fully cover the work. They under the wrong assumption. just want to feel good. One positive is that more people are willing The therapist is also required to to pay extra for a chiropractic visit that includes massage therapy. carry her own malpractice liability The best-case scenario for patients is they present to a insurance coverage. The chiropractor chiropractor's office and get a quality, full-body, soft-tissue is responsible for establishing office massage for an hour or more, followed by chiropractic procedures and policies such as dress manipulation, and the work is fully covered by insurance. codes for everyone to follow. The chiropractor and the massage therapist create a handsOne historical problem is that the on, team approach to patient care. This synergy results in therapists, as well as the chiropractors, are a patient who feels well taken care of and supported. seldom paid according to their respective experience or skill level. However, in this THE MIDDLE ROAD middle scenario, the patient gets a preOftentimes, the middle road is the best course for the manipulation massage (which is not overly patient, therapist, and chiropractor. In this scenario, the expensive) and if he wants an hour or more, he chiropractor has at least one dedicated massage room can schedule a session with the therapist during that the therapist can lease to provide massage at her slow clinic hours. The patient pays extra for the convenience. During busy clinic times, massage massage visit or for the hourly rate not combined therapy is prescribed for specific body areas, and with chiropractic. The massage therapist has plenty the therapist performs up to three, 15-minute spot of discretionary time and gets a decent income massages per hour. The therapist has at least five without getting burned out. The chiropractor has minutes between each client and takes her own massage coverage for his patients during high-volume office notes. Compensation for the therapist is times and there is income covering overhead from the divided into different rates—a specific amount massage room most of the time. for each 15-minute massage or per hour of Chiropractors and massage therapists can, and should, bodywork. Some therapists may prefer to be work together for the benefit of their patients/clients. paid a base salary or by a percentage of their With proper communication, respect, and understanding, individual sales. The straight percentage the partnership can meet the recipients' health-care needs is one of the better arrangements. When and be a moneymaker for both allied professionals. you massage, you get paid, when you don't massage, you don't get paid. In this scenario, the therapist is W. David Bond, DC, DNS, DAAPM, has been a practicing chiropractor considered an employee. The Internal in Southern California since 1988. He is the founder and director of the Revenue Service has developed a Bond Chiropractic Inc. in Valley Village and specializes in chiropractic pain test to determine whether or not a management and soft-tissue/myofascial treatments. Contact him at worker is an employee (Publication www.bondchiropracticinc.com or 818-501-8743. 1779, "Independent Contractor or It pays to be ABMP Certified: www.abmp.com/go/certifiedcentral 73

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