Advocacy and Advisories


Jump to: Advocacy with Integrity  | Ongoing work with Health Benefit Providers | National work on Insurance Audits |  Partnerships |  Cases in the Media | Advocacy for Members

Advocacy with Integrity

The MTAM is a recognized leader in evidence-based advocacy. Our Association is regularly called upon to provide information and advice on behalf of our members and the profession. We use common-sense and facts in all of the work we do on behalf of members. We work with integrity to ensure massage therapists can help more Manitoban's be healthy and are seen with respect by the public and other health care professions.

Ongoing work with Health Benefit Providers

The MTAM works closely with all major health insurance benefit providers, third party administrators and similar organizations. Each month we send an updated list of our members to all major benefit providers so they are able to quickly and efficiently process claims made by patients. The MTAM educates members and helps with individual cases of insurance fraud or suspected fraudulent practices within clinics where our members work.

The MTAM places a priority on advocating on behalf of our members, the massage therapy profession and the public. We continue to educate health benefit providers on the benefits of massage therapy which has helped thousands of Canadians remain active, mobile and pain-free, recover from injuries and relieve debilitating symptoms of illnesses. 

As most insurance companies are national, we assist the Canadian Massage Therapist Alliance (CMTA) in advocating for the continued inclusion of massage therapy coverage in extended health benefits plans. The CMTA meets regularly with representatives from the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association to provide information and education about the role of massage therapists as health professionals across the country, and the evidence supporting the efficacy of massage therapy.

Health Benefit Providers and third party administrators across Canada attended two updates with the MTAM via webinar in January and in March. With our thanks to everyone who attended — we were delighted to have so many representatives from the majority of organizations across Canada.

The first presentation was a Manitoba Regulation update and was well-received. The second presentation was a follow up to the insurers general questions and interests in

  1. Explanations for less-than-30 minute Massage Therapy treatments.
    The MTAM polled members on what type of massage therapy is being done in smaller/shorter treatments so we were able to define this for the health benefit providers. Children’s massage, seniors, infants, and a myriad of other very reasonable treatment types are of shorter duration and our clarifying list made sense to them once they understood the basis.
  2. Ideas and best practices to avoid inadvertent approval of student massage work.
    Many insurers prefer not to approve massage claims that were provided by anyone not appropriately qualified but some do not have the processes or resources to audit or follow up. MTAM is working with some of these insurers to help them simplify and update their processes.
  3. Confusion about Osteopathy / Osteopathic Manual Practitioners.
    This inspired more questions and so the MTAM is now working on gathering all the facts related to his health care to present this information to the public, insurers, and our members.

National work on Insurance Audits

On a national level the Canadian Massage Therapist Alliance (CMTA) met with Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association (CHLIA) to discuss a number of topics including finding ways to ensure audits are more consistent.

The hope is to bring all the information to the table to find solutions to the insurance audit process which currently seems arbitrary and dependant on the individual assessor rather than a coherent, concise, and transparent process.  CHLIA has been working to layout a national strategy/criteria for the collection of information, standard recording processes, and standardized practices. The CMTA will sending information to assist in that process.

The CMTA also presented a number of other advocacy points to CHLIA — thanks for the work of both of these important groups to helping all RMTs.


We are all stronger, when we work together. We are proud of the relationships and partnerships we have with other Massage Therapy Association's across Canada and are a proud member of the Canadian Massage Therapist Alliance. We work with other health care therapies in this province including the Manitoba Physiotherapy Association, the Manitoba Athletic Therapists' Association, and the Manitoba Chiropractor's Association.

Cases in the Media

The MTAM keeps up-to-date on all court cases, incidents, and situations related to massage, massage parlours, body workers, and to cases that involve massage therapy health care practitioners in Manitoba.

When cases are being investigated or are in the court system, we will not comment specifically to respect the integrity of that case or investigation. The MTAM believes it is inappropriate to comment publicly on cases sub judice. Publicly discussing cases sub judice may constitute interference with the legal process.

Supporting Our Members

The MTAM undertakes a variety of advice, mentorship and advocacy for our members:

  • We give members step-by-step ways of managing legal challenges, we can help them to find affordable legal help, coach and assist in preparation when then need to testify or hand in their SOAP notes for a case.
  • We coach clinic owners and individual therapists how to report incidents when they have been propositioned, assaulted, or mistreated by a client.
  • The MTAM has been working with Clinic Owners and Spas to build better employment and independent contractor situations for RMTs and help the organizations manage human resource challenges.
  • We consult to help businesses improve work situations, treat MTs more fairly, and to be sure that pay, work conditions and contracts are fair.
  • Our Associate Membership ($50) is our way of inviting Clinics, Spas, Wellness Centres and other organizations to be a part of this community. To attend events and take part in key discussions that affect the profession.
  • The MTAM offers practice advice and mentors to help members with all of their practice-related questions, to review contracts, navigate starting their business, and to mediate challenging situations with co-workers or owners.