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american massage therapy association
9757 NE Juanita Dr, Suite 107
Kirkland, WA 98034
advancing the art, science and practice of massage therapy in washington state
October 2014
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Welcome to the latest edition of e-news - the bi-monthly newsletter from AMTA Washington. In each issue we keep you up to date on the latest industry news and AMTA Chapter events.  We hope that you enjoy our newsletter and feel free to contact us with any questions or comments.

AMTA Washington Chapter
President's Message


Marybeth Berney
This issue of the E-News is jam-packed full of information about the massage world here in WA and across the country. Please make sure to read all the way to the bottom to keep yourself fully informed about the many things that are important to your practice, your profession and this organization. And once again I want to thank you for supporting this organization with your membership and your investment in the future of the profession and AMTA-WA.

Thank you, 
Marybeth Berney, President 

AMTA-WA Convention - Shaping the Future

April 23-25, 2015
Greater Tacoma Convention & Trade Center

Plans are in full swing for the 2015 convention. 

Exhibitor and Sponsorship Opportunities will be posted to the website the week of October 20. If you have a favorite supplier or company you would like to see in the exhibit hall, email their contact information to so we can be sure they are on our list to receive an invitation to participate.


The Career Fair is a new opportunity for those who have employment or independent contractor positions for massage therapists. Employers, such as chiropractors, massage franchises, spas, and athletic clubs may choose to have an exhibit booth and participate in the full exhibit hall experience, AND/OR may choose to have a table top at the Career Fair to recruit and hire LMPs. Participating in the Career Fair is a great way to attract and meet face-to-face with some of the top talent in the massage industry. Email contact information to if you would like to receive details on having a table at the Career Fair.

The Kick Start Program for students and first-year LMPs returns on Thursday, April 23 with mini-sessions for students and instructors in the morning, followed by a longer breakout session in the afternoon, which will include the very popular LMP Panel Presentation.


Convention workshops will include the following:

  • Integrative Treatment of the Lymph and Fascia, Diana Kincaid
  • SOAP Charting in Today's Integrative Healthcare Environment, Diana Thompson
  • Alleviating Piriformis Syndrome, Robert McAtee
  • Save Your Career, Save Your Hands, Joshua Morton
  • Ethics for WA LMPs, Dawn Schmidt
  • Thai Table Massage, Eric Spivack 
  • And more!!
Complete details and registration information will be available in early February. Watch for additional information at, in your mailbox and via email.

Save the Dates for Massage Awareness Days

Mark your calendar and plan to join us for one or all three Massage Awareness Days (MAD) in Olympia.

February 26, March 5, April 9 from 10:00am-3:00pm.

MAD is an opportunity to show our lawmakers what we do by letting them experience massage themselves. LMPs volunteer a day to come to Olympia and do massage. Once again, it is a very important year for us to have a strong presence in Olympia. We will start taking volunteer sign ups in December through our website, Look for more info in the December E-News.
Reminder to Watch for Email Scams

There are many email scams that target massage therapists. Unfortunately, some of these use the name AMTA to appear more legitimate and others actually use AMTA's Find a Massage Therapist® national locator service to email individual members.

Always be suspicious of emails sent from outside the U.S. from someone who wants to set up multiple massage sessions while they, or someone they represent, is visiting. 

Click here for additional details on this scam and what to watch out for.

Update from 2014 National Convention

Diana Thompson, LMP, AMTA-WA 2nd Vice President


National AMTA Convention was HUGE! Nearly 2000 friends and colleagues gathered in Denver, CO September 17-20, the largest attendance in the history of AMTA. 

The opening session highlighted the accomplishments of the year:

* President Nancy Porambo emphasized the AMTA's focus on massage as healthcare demonstrated by AMTA forging alliances with allied health professions

* Jerrilyn Cambron, President of the Massage Therapy Foundation (MTF) announced the joint funding of a research review of the massage therapy literature between AMTA and MTF, conducted by the Samueli Institute, a large research center known for studies on CAM and the military

* Bill Brown, AMTA Executive Director, shared news of AMTA's growth: a 10% increase in AMTA membership overall, with a 20% rise in member schools, and 3000 lapsed members who returned to AMTA

* AMTA announced a partnership with the American Red Cross, making it easier for Chapters to provide massage therapy at emergency and non-emergency events

Dr Mehmet Oz, the keynote speaker, was greeted with a standing ovation. He delivered a fact-rich presentation detailing the many benefits of massage for different health conditions, and shared his own experience of employing massage therapists in his cardiac hospital. He emphasized our shared goal: to improve the health of America. He "only" saves lives, but hearts need a reason to keep beating- massage therapists provide the important stuff: we lift people up, make life-affirming connections, and provide deep relaxation and relief from pain. He ended with some advice on forging partnerships with physicians: come in with a solution, not a problem, and doctors will remember you.

The award ceremony was bitter sweet, with two awards going to members that passed away this year.

* Distinguished Service - Bill Greenberg
* President's Award - Dan Barrow

AMTA-WA received the 5-Hands Award, the highest recognition of excellence for Chapter operations, Annie LaCroix was acknowledged on stage for her AMTA-WA Meritorious Award, and Marybeth Berney received her 25-year pin.

The following two and a half days were packed with workshops, networking, shopping and eating. There were 32 different classes to choose from, including business classes on taxes and malpractice, hands-on classes on treating fibromyalgia and alleviating piriformis syndrome, and a panel on what the research tells us about pain. The exhibit hall held 76 vendors with the latest tools in treatment and education. Networking events included a luncheon for newcomers, a reception for teachers and a hopping dinner/dance for everyone.

Save the date: Next year's convention will be in Pittsburgh, PA, August 19-22, 2015.
Ten Minutes That Will Impact Your Future

Teri Mayo, LMP, AMTA-WA 3rd Vice President

Teri Mayo
We had a packed room at the 2014 AMTA-WA annual meeting in March. A great turn out. Some therapists came for the CE's, some for the networking. Most came to vote for state leadership. Up until 2015, WA chapter leadership has been voted in at that meeting. This coming year we have an exciting opportunity to increase access to the vote because our elections will be online. With 4500 members, it feels appropriate that a larger percentage of folks can easily access this opportunity. Will you participate?

Your chapter leaders, myself included, are a diverse group. And we make great effort to represent all of our members. We are proud to have a leader from eastern WA, two clinic owners, several that bill insurance, some that do not. We have two solo practitioners in our ranks and a massage school owner. I feel lucky to work with this group of people. Who sits on the executive board for the next two years as 1st and 3rd Vice Presidents and as Treasurer is up to you in 2015, but only if you vote. Please participate and be heard. And after you vote, don't be shy. Talk to your leaders. We are your liaisons with the national association and we are your representatives at the state level. I know that I can speak for all of us when I say that we want to hear from you.

Were you at the annual meeting in March? If you were, you might remember that I had those who voted in the 2013 National AMTA Elections stand up. It was a pretty good percentage of the room and there were 201 in attendance. Not a surprise since those that might have been motivated to show up to vote for state leadership would be inclined to track the national elections as well. But it still wasn't everyone in the room and that is something I would love to see change.

In November of 2013 at the time of elections, there were 53,838 eligible voters. Only 1,431 voted. That is a 2.66% vote rate. You can imagine my frustration and heartache when I see folks complaining in online chat rooms about the direction that "National is taking us." How can members complain if they can't be bothered to take the 10 minutes to read the bios and vote?

As I said in March, there is a rumor that Washington and Oregon carried the 2013 national election. It is so exciting that we have a national board member in Glyn Desmond from Washington. It is also exciting that John Combe from Oregon was also elected. Perhaps the fact that we had three northwest candidates on the ballot increased our turnout. But that has to not matter. We have to get more involved. It isn't about where the candidates are from, it matters what they stand for.

Most national candidates have Facebook pages and will answer questions directly posed to them. You can also access email addresses on the national AMTA election website page if that is more your style. If you want to hear where they stand on a specific issue, pose a question. And then decide.

Massage is at a cross roads. We are at a very critical time in our profession's history, especially in Washington. We have much to lose, depending on who sits at that table and represents us and speaks on our behalf. We also have much to gain depending on who sits at that table and represents us and speaks on our behalf.
My focus here is to get you to vote. It isn't about how to vote. I get that what matters to me is possibly different than what matters to you or to your office mate. Vote for what matters to you in the national election this fall (voting begins November 1st) and for your state leaders in March. Please take the time to read the bios and vote. And then bug every AMTA member you know to do the same. This is your chance to be heard and to have representation that speaks to your values. Ten minutes isn't a lot of time but the impact can be huge.
Your Vote Counts
2014 AMTA National Elections

Be among the professional members that shape our association. Vote for our national leaders. AMTA is the premier professional organization and needs top leadership to be a strong voice and guide us to the future. Your vote is needed to ensure that AMTA remains on top and continues to be well represented.

Get to know the candidates. Read each of their biographical sketches. You can find candidate's bio and social media links by visiting the AMTA official election website. Don't be shy, ask them questions or read what someone else has asked. Find out what their vision and goals are for the future of AMTA and the massage profession.

This year candidates have been given the opportunity to create a candidate video clip that has allowed them to introduce themselves to the membership in a more personal way. It too may be accessed from the election website.

Your voice counts in this organization. Make a decision to support one of our core values, 'to be a membership driven organization' and vote. That is what 'member driven' means.

Join in. Become a more informed voter and cast your vote by December 1st.

2014 Election Timeline

November 1-5: A link to the online ballot will be sent via electronic mail to all eligible voting members.
December 1: Completed ballots are due.
January 1: Results will be announced no later than January 1 on the AMTA website.
March 1: New officers assume office.

Please contact Colleen Leeders if you have any questions: 847-905-1650.
Proposed Massage License Fee Increase & other Updates from Department of Health

Marybeth Berney, LMP, AMTA-WA President 

On September 26th I attended the Health Systems Quality Assurance (HSQA) Associations Meeting. Here are some quick updates from that meeting.

  1. The Department of Health (DOH) is moving toward offering both original license application and license renewals online for all health care professions. This is happening in a "phased in manner".  At this point 98 Profession License Types (including massage) are able to renew online and 9 Profession License Types are able to apply online (massage is NOT included yet). By the 2nd quarter of 2016 all Profession License Types should be able to apply online. According to DOH, "Online licensing will improve patient safety and access to care by allowing providers to provide care sooner."
  2. The DOH also has an Information Collection Project that is underway. By the 1st quarter of 2016 implementation of this program should be underway and healthcare providers will be asked to provide demographic information as part of license renewal.  This will allow DOH policy makers to be able to analyze healthcare workforce information by mid-2016. This should, "Improve healthcare workforce information in order to improve access to healthcare and reduce healthcare disparities".
  3. According to RCW 43.70.250 License fees for professions, occupations and businesses.  Each profession must be self-supporting and the fees charged will be sufficient to pay the costs of administering that program. So Massage Therapy and Animal Massage Therapy are both on the list for increases in fees. This is due to two things that are happening simultaneously.  The first is that the cost of discipline is going up. This is due in great part to fighting the many, many cases of unlicensed practice.  I am sure many of you have read about the "Foot Spa" raids all across the state. These have generally been done in combination with DOH, local law enforcement and Homeland Security. These are a GOOD THING as it protects the good name and reputation of licensed massage professionals and the entire massage profession. The second reason that fees are going up is that the growth of the massage profession in WA has slowed to only 1%. So DOH projects fewer practitioners paying a license or license renewal fee. It is the age old...revenues are flat or declining and expenses are up!
News from Department of Health
WA DOH logo

On July 18, 2014, the Department of Health's Office of Health Professions and Facilities officially filed a pre-proposal statement of inquiry with the Office of the Code Reviser to open chapter 246-830 WAC. This is the first phase of rule development.


This chapter has been opened to clarify, streamline, and modernize the massage practitioner regulations. The Board of Massage (board) will work in conjunction with the Department of Health throughout the rulemaking process


Click here to view the attached WSR #14-15-103. 


In response to WSR #14-15-103, the board will hold rulemaking workshops. Notice of rulemaking workshops will be sent to the listserv. Interested parties, stakeholders, and the general public are invited to participate in the workshops. For continued updates on rule development, interested parties are encouraged to join the massage board listserv.


Megan Brown, Program Manager

Washington State Board of Massage

Department of Health

Office of Health Professions and Facilities

(360) 236-4945


Attached please find the draft rule revision to WAC 246-16-100-Sexual misconduct. This draft rule language proposes clearer standards of conduct for all health care professions regulated by the Secretary.


Click here to view the draft rule revision WAC246-16-100.


Comments are due on this draft rule language by October 24, 2014.

Maura Craig, Policy Analyst

Health Systems Quality Assurance

Washington State Department of Health


News From L&I
Important Information for Employers in WA


L & I has a program to help employers keep injured workers on the job. We've posted the L & I "Stay at Work" informational brochure on our website.


Click here to access the brochure.


Do You Have Questions about Billing L&I?


The Department of Labor and Industries is offering free billing workshops. These workshops are designed to provide you with best billing practices. Your L&I representatives will answer your questions, demonstrate tools and show you how to use the website resources. Earn certificate for free CE credits upon completion of the 4-hour workshop. For workshop details, schedule and sign to sign up please see: Medical Provider Billing Workshop schedule

Sign In to the AMTA Chapter Website
We've established website accounts for all current members of AMTA Washington on our Chapter site -

When you Sign In you'll be able to take advantage of the many member benefits we offer online.  For example, you can register for events at member pricing, gain access to members-only pages such as Legal Assistance and member forums.

In December 2013, we sent an e-mail to all members containing Sign In instructions. If you haven't signed in yet, or you don't have the e-mail, follow the instructions below. 
  • Go to the website home page
  • Click on Forgot your password?
  • Enter your e-mail address
  • Enter the validation code
  • Click on Reset Password 
You'll receive an e-mail with a link to reset your password. During the reset process your Username will appear on the screen. Please make note of this as you'll need it to Sign In.

If you don't receive the Password Reset e-mail or you're encountering any other difficulties, contact our webmaster for assistance.

We've also posted several help pages on the website so that you'll be able to utilize all of the features we offer.
Update Your Website Profile
After you've Signed In to the Chapter website, the first thing you should do is update your profile.  Your profile will determine what information is visible to other members and the public.

The profile page is where you'll also determine if you would like to be included in our "Find a Therapist" search feature. This is where the public can search for LMP's by city, region or specialty, such as Hot Stone, or Reflexology.

To configure your profile -
  • Sign In to the website
  • Click on Manage Profile (right side of screen)
  • Click on Edit Bio (left side of screen)
Click here for the Edit Bio help page with detailed instructions on how to configure your profile (sign in required)