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Letter to The Iowa Board of Massage Therapy
  • Posted by:martin
  • Posted on : October 06, 2015

October 13, 2015

Copy of a letter I sent to The 
Iowa Board of Massage Therapy Bureau of Professional Licensure in Des Moines.

Dear Tony Alden,

As an LMT who has been in practice since 1997, I support the proposed changes to The Iowa Board of Massage Therapy’s continuing education, licensure, renewal, and reactivation rules.

The changes simplify the language of the rules and reduce potential confusion in their interpretation. The document will become more readable, more “user friendly.”

In my experience, time and money are crucial. Twenty-four (24) hours of continuing education is expensive, especially when one is trying to raise a family. Sixteen (16) hours of continuing education each renewal period, with the option of taking twelve (12) hours of online learning is a smart change; it provides professionals with more options and aligns the profession with the times. I am not a salaried employee, rather the sole proprietor of my own business, so when I am not working, I am not providing for my family. It may seem paltry, but eight (8) hours of paid work-time can make a difference. Considerable travel time for many continuing education options can also steal valuable work-time.

This is a good example of a professional board attempting to treat its constituents as professionals by providing them with more choices rather than limiting their options. I have been involved in education as a teacher, instructor and learner for many years and can spot positive change when it is proposed.

I also appreciate the board’s willingness to reduce limitations on presenters of continuing education classes and workshops. I believe it is an LMTs professional responsibility to investigate whether a particular class or instructor is to her liking or will enhance his professional development. I’d like to have the choice to take professional development coursework from any provider who is doing good work, presents well, and provides material and subject matter which will further the beneficial work that I have been delivering professionally for 18 years. When a presenter must be sponsored by a professional organization or chapter of massage therapy, or a school of massage therapy, it can limit one’s access to quality professional development options from presenters who wish to operate autonomously.

Our profession is growing in numbers and in acceptance as a viable healthcare option. Encouraging licensed massage therapists to grow professionally is the duty of the Iowa Board of Massage Therapy, and the proposed changes to the continuing education, licensure, renewal, and reactivation rules are a positive and proactive step in this direction. I urge you to enact these proposed changes.

Respectfully submitted,

Martin Gibbens