Massage therapy and acupuncture has worked its way up to an accepted form of treatment for basic injuries, especially resulting from automobile crashes and workplace injuries. Despite is acceptance and known ability to sooth pain, relax the muscles and go directly to the source of the pain, many state legislators are cracking down on allowing licensed massage therapists from billing Personal Injury Protection, also known as PIP.
Florida Massage Therapy Law
The rise of massage therapy is actually linked to the rise of modern day athletes. While the procedures have existed since ancient times, it has seen various levels of popularity in the United States, with a resurgence starting in the 1970’s along with popular athletes.
Though coming in many different styles including stone massages, traditional massages, deep muscle massages, trigger point therapy and the popular reflexology service, the health benefits are far reaching. It has been noted that massages not only tend to reduce tension in the patients, but the procedures go to the source of pain and helps relieve it. Massage therapy also can lower blood pressure, aid in fighting depression, improve sleeping habits, and increase the flow of lymph and decrease the heart rate.
Despite these benefits and the popularity of massage therapy to combat pain after auto crashes, states are seeking to limit or eliminate claims filed by licenses massage therapists. Florida senate bill 1860 or SB 1860 will strip therapists and acupuncturists from being allowed to bill PIP in cases from auto crashes.
The state of Tennessee also has a similar bill proposed called House Bill 2387 or Senate Bill 2249, HB2387/SB2249. This bill seeks to move the massage therapy board over from the Department of health related board and over to the Department of Commerce and Insurance. By reclassifying the skill, it moves it from a recognized medical field/ health profession to just a trade. Insurance companies only pay out to recognized health professionals and not to a skilled trade. The moving of the board will essentially have the same results as Florida senate bill 1860.