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Kansas Achieves Licensing Law
Kansas Governor Sam Brownback signed House Bill 2615 into law on Friday, May 13, 2016. HB2615 includes provisions for the licensure of acupuncturists in the state of Kansas.
Increasing the Value of Spine Care: CMS Approves New Low Back Pain Registry
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has approved the Spine IQ Low Back Pain Registry as a qualified clinical data registry for the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) in 2016.
Insuring Quality Control in Herb Importation: An Interview with Wilson Lau
Wilson Lau is the vice president of Nuherbs, a Chinese herb importation company based in San Leandro, California. Before joining Nuherbs, he trained as a lawyer specializing in FDA law.
Beating the Odds: Interview With Para-Powerlifter Adeline Dumapong-Ancheta
Since October 2015, the FICS Foundation, the charitable organization affiliated with the International Federation of Sports Chiropractic (FICS), has been supporting disabled athletes internationally.
Tai Chi Documentary Premier
First Run Features recently announced the world theatrical premiere of Barry Strugatz's documentary The Professor: Tai Chi's Journey West, which premiered last month at the Laemmle Music Hall in Los Angeles.
A Long-Overdue Win for Oregon Medicaid Patients - and the Implications for Other States
Beginning July 1, 2016, Oregon Medicaid patients with spinal pain (cervical, thoracic, lumbar, pelvic) who are determined to be low risk based on a biopsychosocial assessment tool (STarT Back – Keele University) can receive four chiropractic visits per episode.
AOM Hospital-Based Practice: A Future Reality?
The natural evolution of health care on the planet is integrative health. We may have some challenges ahead, but based on my research, all indicators are pointing in a positive direction. There seems to be an evolving consciousness among our patient population that is "getting it."
Sit or Stand? Analyzing a Mixed Message
I'm more than a bit confused. At my age, that seems to be a rather common occurrence. However, today more than ever, I'm getting a mixed message.
Acupuncture's Impact on the World
For several years, I have been hearing about the town of Rothenburg, Germany. It seemed just a dot on a map until I arrived. It is the home of the TCM Kongress which began in 1968. It has been held annually for 47 years and it has only missed one year.
Believe it or not, an estimated one-third of your patients have eaten some form of fast food within 24 hours of their appointment with you.
How to Stay Sane During the Elections: Understanding Through the Lens of Chinese Medicine
In Chinese Medicine philosophy, everything consists of Yin and Yang. The law of polar opposites – one cannot exist without its opposite.
Chronic Pain: Become Part of the Solution
I have lectured to more than 7,000 chiropractic physicians over the past five years regarding the chronic pain and opioid epidemic in this country.
Introducing the Acupuncture Today Digital Edition
In response to the changing habits of our readers, Acupuncture Today will introduce a digital edition of the publication (in addition to our print edition) beginning with the August 2016 issue.
Multivitamin Supplement May Reduce Breast Cancer Recurrence
There is a great deal of controversy regarding the value of multiple vitamin supplements in cancer prevention.
Acupuncture Muscle Trigger Point and Oriental Medicine Sports Therapy
It is difficult to ascertain the internal condition of professional basketball player Lebron James during game one of the 2014 NBA finals, in which he developed debilitating muscle cramps that led to his premature removal from the game.
The Pertinent Negative
We all have to perform evaluations on patients. Most of us don't like doing it – exams take time, and worse it takes even more time after the evaluation to put together a narrative summary of the findings. Sometimes, this process becomes downright tedious.
Adventures with the San Jiao
Those of us who have been in practice for several decades relish the way meridians and points reveal new diagnostic clues and new insights. I love to encourage my students to see this as an adventure that goes way beyond the textbooks.
Treating Hip & Groin Pain With Abdominal Release of Upper Lumbar Nerve Impingements
Have you encountered patients with groin and hip pain you can't seem to solve? You know it's not a worn-out hip; you suspect the pain is somehow connected to the spine. But somehow, you just can't help them break through.
Three Tips to Help You Analyze the Acupuncture Case Studies of the NCCAOM Exam
Confirm the answer quickly by the elimination method. Case study:
After two treatments for back pain, a patient presents for a third
session complaining of rapid breathing and wheezing that is made worse
during cold weather.
An MD Who Understands the Opioid Epidemic
Doctors of chiropractic have an important role to play in ending the opioid epidemic and dealing with chronic pain by conservative means (see our top story in this issue) – but who's to blame for opioid dependence and abuse in the first place?
What's New in Phytonutrition: Mangifera Indica, "The King of Fruits"
One hundred percent pure Indian green mango fruit (mangifera indica), harvested at a special degree of ripeness for efficacy and taste, can now be concentrated as a phytonutrient nutraceutical powder.
An Emerging Partnership Model
Maryland University of Integrative Health (MUIH) has educated integrative health and wellness practitioners for the last 40 years, originally as an acupuncture clinic and school. The institution's transformative, relationship-centered programs integrate traditional wisdom with contemporary science
August, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 08
What Became of IMA?
By Ramon G. McLeod, Editor-in-Chief
In early March of this year, calls went out from Will Green, owner and founder of the International Massage Association (IMA), to at least two major players in the massage insurance industry.Green wanted to know whether there was any interest in buying the liability insurance business that IMA had begun in 1994.
Once a major insurer for the massage community, IMA at its peak boasted more than 30,000 members. But, by early 2010 the association had shrunk to no more than 15,000 members, sources familiar with the discussions said. Nevertheless, the company still appeared to be a viable business, these sources said.
But, these sources said, something was wrong.
While their stories varied on some of the details, all said that Green allegedly made a number of statements in meetings that pointed to a troubling issue: IMA was in financial straits. Both of the established companies would eventually pull out of the sales talks with Green. A third company, new to the insurance business at that time, also ended talks.
Green, despite repeated attempts and interview requests, has refused to discuss publicly what has happened to his company.
According to one of the sources, "The big question was 'why' come to us? ...Then I was told that (IMA's) insurance broker had resigned from the risk group."
An interview with the owner of the brokerage firm, Utah-based Stratus Insurance, Inc., confirmed that the relationship between the two businesses had been severed. Central to the breakup was a dispute over more than $500,000 that involved premiums for policies underwritten by Markel Insurance Company.
IMA members got their first inklings of serious problems on April 8, when a posting on the IMA Web site said that it could no longer offer new policies to members. Then, on June 21, an e-mail was sent to past and present members stating that the company had ceased selling insurance on April 22 because its insurance agent had resigned.
Earlier that month, the registration for a "risk purchasing group" called Health and Beauty Purchasing Group, was cancelled. Federal law requires registration in the states where such a group is expected to do business under those laws. The Health and Beauty Purchasing Group was formed to purchase insurance for IMA.
In an interview, Chicago-based attorney Daniel V. O'Leary said he cancelled the registration in June. He said he was brought in by Green and Stratus in 2009 to finish getting the group registered in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. When Stratus resigned as IMA's broker, that left the association without a broker to represent it. Green was unable to find a new broker quickly, O'Leary said, and without one, the purchasing group could not continue.
While unfamiliar with the financial situation at IMA, he said that a serious dispute had erupted between Green and Stratus. "There was a lot of 'he said, she said' going on at the time, and we decided to cancel the group," O'Leary said.
By late June, IMA had ceased selling insurance and members were told that the business had been turned over to the National Association of Massage Therapists, a non-profit company located in Virginia. Sources present at the meetings where Green discussed the sale of the business have said that Green told them he needed to sell as a direct result of more than $500,000 in member premiums that is central to a dispute with his former insurance broker.
Meanwhile, properties that Green owns in Warrenton, Va., including IMA headquarters, are currently $7,800 in arrears on property taxes, public records show. The headquarters building is also up for sale for $2 million.
While Green has refused to publicly describe the situation, the owner of the insurance brokerage firm, Bret VanLeeuven, said in an interview that his company, Stratus, "cancelled him, not the the other way around...He owes us close to seven figures." Sources have said that Stratus believes it is owed at least $800,000 from Green and IMA.
The relationship between Green and VanLeeuven began around 2004, VanLeeuven said. Stratus, like other insurance brokers of its type, acquires the policies that insure the premium payers from liability claims.
Two of the sources who were solicited by Green to buy IMA said that statements were made at their meetings that suggested that Stratus had failed to properly acquire policies in several of the years since 2004, an allegation that VanLeeuven strongly denies. "Every premium that was collected was passed on to the appropriate parties," he said. "Our business has been audited many times, we held up our part of the contract," he said.
"And the bottomline is that as far as Stratus is concerned, every claim that was made was paid. There have been no complaints about unpaid valid claims. Every state has some kind of insurance commission and I defy anyone to find a complaint made against us," he said.
Green has not responded to numerous requests for an interview about IMA's financial status. Written questions were sent as well and questions posed to him were these:
Editor's Note: If you have had issues with either of IMA's insurance operations, please contact .
Associate Editor Christie Bondurant contributed to this report.
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