At the January meeting the Licensing Committee of Maryland Board of Massage Therapy Examiners introduced their recommendations for the conversion to a One Tier System.
Please remember that all of this must be changed via legislation, the soonest this will happen is 2022 meaning any changes will not take place until late 2022 at the earliest, many changes won't be until 2023 or 2024.
They voted on and approved:
- New educational requirements of a 750 Hour Massage Education for the single tier of Licensed Massage Therapists.
- College credits are not required, however the Community College massage programs will remain as strong candidates for training because many have career goals supported by earning a degree and additional advanced education.
- The other educational requirements remain similar with research added as a required topic.
- They have changed the CPR requirement to Basic Life Support
What is NOT decided - how the current RMPs will be converted to LMTs. What the timeline is and what the requirements are. The Licensing Committee offered a variety of options.
- The first option is Legacy and all RMPs from a certain date back would automatically become LMTs.
- There is a well supported option to Legacy all RMPs who have been registered for 10 years and up to LMTs immediately duue to their experience and many years of CE studies.
- The other options are a combination of requiring that the current RMPs document additional education beyond their massage schooling to meet the new 750 hour requirement and allowing for documented work hours to convert to educational hours.
- Documented CE hours could advance an RMP from the 600 hours of massage school to the 750 now required - requiring 150 hours of CEs
- One suggestion is to allow 500 hours of work to equal 30 CEs, meaning an RMP would then only need to document 120 hours of CEs.
AMTA Maryland is looking at the options for this conversion. We have suggested that RMPs at 5 years or more receive the legacy advancement to LMT.
We fully appreciate that current LMTs put in a lot of effort and expense for their education, we see that hard work as an asset that you are not losing in this conversion. You are skilled and well trained and bring that to your client sessions and employment opportunities. The change to a single tier is meant to bring understanding, equity, and clarity to the profession.
Our priorities are that individuals are not asked to spend a lot of extra money or time to get more education if that is not practical for their lives, and have a pathway to RMP or the option to remain an RMP. We also appreciate that experience is important and are glad that the Board is considering options that give credit for working experience. We also recognize that many went to schools with more hours, or have some college and want to find equitable paths for all RMPs.
We are gathering input at this time and will make a more formal suggestion to the Board in February.