a community of practitioners
Vivian Madison Mahoney said:
In the past, I have been able to bill Workman's compensation directly, and although, I have a B.S. degree, I am still a Certified Licensed Massage Therapist. I also just sent my application as a Massage Therapist to Blue Shield. In addition, when I was a Massage Therapist working in a Physical Therapy Dept., there was a list of Massage Therapists Providers-Blue Cross/Blue Shield, along with Horizon, i believe.
Jody thanks for sharing this information.
It is true that Blue Cross, Cigna, Anthem and some other companies do not pay massage therapists at all but will pay for massage services IF it is provided by a PT, MD or DC. This is purely discrimination in my estimation. This is why I am starting an organization and will be continuing to request all that wish to get on the band wagon to help me fight to send an email to email@example.com and in the subject line, print I'm With You or something similar.
The reason these carriers do not pay massage practitioners directly is because they are the ADMINISTRATORS for SELF INSURED EMPLOYERS. Under ERISA a Federal Act, they do not have to follow even State Laws such as FL and WA. However WA state is the only state that allows LMT's to contract with insurance companies as network providers. It is my understanding that even in WA, ERISA rules over Self Insured Employer Plans..
State Laws do not superscede Federal Laws. FL had the first state law enacted to require LMT's to be reimbursed by an insurance company and they too have not been able to overcome the Federal ERISA Laws.
However, I have spent 3 hours total in phone conferences, power point presentations and emails with the President of a company who teaches all about ERISA to the medical profession including hospitals. He has indicated to me there may be some loopholes around this in the near future. I am staying on top of that as with all insurance and health care issues to prevent massage therapists from further losses and to try to open new doors for our profession.
All of us working together, continuing positively on the path WILL make it happen!!!
I just read last night in one of my subscriptions on health care reform issues, that several insurers are planning on raising rates up to 39%. If we don't get some kind of health care reform passed this year I fear for those who need it most.