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New Brunswick passes legislation for massage therapy regulation

Dec. 17, 2013 — Bill 25, An Act to Incorporate the College of Massage Therapists of New Brunswick, has received royal assent on Dec. 13, effectively paving the way for regulation of the massage therapy profession in the province.


December 17, 2013
By Mari-Len De


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With the passage of the legislation, New Brunswick becomes the fourth
province in Canada to have massage therapy as a regulated profession —
the first three are Ontario, British Columbia and Newfoundland.

Bill
25, also known as the Massage Therapy Act, was a private member’s bill
introduced by Brian MacDonald, member of the legislative assembly for
Fredericton-Silverwood in New Brunswick.

Under the legislation, a
new College of Massage Therapists of New Brunswick shall be
established. The College will consist of persons who are active members
in good standing of the Association of New Brunswick Massage Therapists
or the New Brunswick Massotherapy Association, or active massage therapy
members in good standing of the Regroupement Professionel Francophone
en Naturo-Masso Kinésiologie du Nouveau-Brunswick.

Among the
objectives of the College is to regulate the practice of massage therapy
and govern its members in order to "serve and protect public interest."
The College will also establish, maintain, develop and enforce
standards of qualification for the practice of massage therapy, as well
as establish and enforce a code of professional ethics.
 
The act
defines the practice of massage therapy as "the assessment of the soft
tissues and joints of the body and the treatment and prevention of
physical dysfunction and pain of the soft tissues and joints by
mobilization to develop, maintain, rehabilitate or augment physical
function, or relieve pain, and does not include the manipulation or
movement of the spine or the joints of the body beyond an individual’s
usual physiological range of motion, using a high velocity, low
amplitude thrust."

The New Brunswick Massotherapy Association
(NBMA) welcomed the new legislation saying the regulation of the
profession "enhances our credibility as health-care professionals – with
the distant goal of working in hospitals."

"(The massage
therapy) practice will evolve as public will begin to understand the
therapeutic benefits to therapeutic massage," said John MacKenny,
president of the NBMA. He added regulation will increase the massage
therapy profession’s credibility with insurance providers.

MacKenney
says with efforts to get the province’s massage therapy profession
regulation accomplished, NBMA will now focus on enhancing its efforts to
promote massage therapy.


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