From the AMTA NJ Government Relations Committee:
(Renewal Notice Update of October 13, 2020)
Dear Members and Friends,
The NJ State of Massage and Bodywork Therapy Board convened a virtual meeting on September 22, 2020. Public members were able to attend without comment during the meeting. Comments for the Board were asked to be submitted prior to the meeting date for the NJ State MBT Board to consider and reply during the meeting.
Based on the inquiries received by the Chapter members, Government Relations submitted a question for consideration by the Board regarding the ability to provide face massage. The following is a synopsis of their reply:
“Yes, face massage is permitted, provided that the massage and bodywork therapist wears a protective mask AND a face shield while doing so. The client/patient is permitted to remove their protective face mask during the face massage and must immediately don their mask following the sequence.”
The NJ State MBT Board reiterated that CPR for renewal can be completed on-line provided that the program is with one of the approved providers pursuant to: N.J.C.A.13:37A-2.3(a) RENEWAL OF LICENSE. For the complete rule, please go to the website and click on “Laws and Regulations.”
Lastly, at this time home visits are still prohibited by NJ DCA AO 2020-11 as aligned with NJ Governor Murphy’s EO 154.
Renewal notices have been sent out and as some of you may know that there have been a few glitches. In a recent communication with the NJ State Board the following information may be helpful:
- Renewal notices were mailed to licensees at the same time the online links were being completed…therefore, renewal online was not yet completely available.
- When entering proof of liability insurance, the system will not take any symbols…only numbers should be entered.
- A licensee who employs other massage therapists and is registered with the state as a business, should renew their personal license first before renewing the business registration.
- Inactive Status is available. This option does not require that you provide proof of liability insurance. While on inactive status therapists cannot practice MBT. CE’s are still required to be completed during the period of inactive status so that when you convert to active status, your license will be in compliance.
- When renewing, it is suggested that licensees take the opportunity to update contact information such as address, phone numbers and email address.
- The NJ State Board advises that letters to legislators regarding renewal problems is unnecessary and inappropriate. Should licensees have issues with renewal, they should contact the NJ State MBT Board at email@example.com or their associations for clarification and guidance.
Additionally, it is not necessary to send proof of CE’s to the NJ State MBT Board. When you open your renewal portal, you will be asked to attest that your CE’s have been completed. However, should you be audited, it is prudent to maintain files of your CE’s.
And finally, we are continuing to move forward with GR initiatives that require legislative changes. In order to gather information for our lobbyist to use, we recently sent a survey to chapter members: https://bit.ly/35KtFa5
Please take a moment to participate before October 15 as your feedback will be an invaluable asset to achieve our goals on your behalf. It is our intent to have these initiatives lead to ease of practice in your local municipality, and for ease of portability in other states. Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions and/or concerns at GovRel.AMTA@gmail.com
We are here to provide you with support. Best wishes as we continue to navigate the challenges of the COVID-19 mitigation.
NJ AMTA Government Relations Team
From the AMTA NJ Education Committee
APPROVED ONLINE CPR Update
Following the meeting of the NJ Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy on Tuesday, September 22, 2020, we wanted to give you a quick update regarding the approved options for online CPR for this upcoming license renewal cycle.
In accordance with N.J.C.A. 13:37.A.-2.3(a), Online CPA courses are only accepted for licensure renewal if they are offered by one of the approved providers:
American Heart Association
American Red Cross
National Safety Counsel
Coyne First Aid, Inc.
American Safety & Health Institute
EMS Safety Services, Inc.
As stated previously, the American Red Cross offers CPR/First Aid/AED training fully online and this program is accepted
for the renewal of your license in this renewal cycle.
Courses offered by National CPR Foundation and My CPR Certification Online will NOT be recognized by
the NJ Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy.
Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions and/or concerns regarding continuing education for this upcoming 2020 licensure renewal period by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org. We are here for you and wish you all the best as we are navigating the challenges COVID-19 presents in our professional and personal lives.
Inactive Status of License
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
Needless to say we are navigating a journey that is unprecedented in our times and is challenging us on a global level.
Your NJ Government Relations Committee has been working in cooperation with our lobbyist and our national office to stay current on changes affecting the practice of Massage Therapy on your behalf, and to provide you with pertinent information.
As we approach our renewal period, we know that some members may choose not to renew because of the inability to practice as impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. For this reason, your Government Relations Committee wants to provide you with some information as a reminder of the rules of our License. It is important to give thoughtful consideration to the status of your license and choose your path for renewal.
Most importantly, we recommend that you NOT let your license lapse. It is recommended that you place your license on “inactive status” so that should you resume your practice when you feel safe to do so, your reactivation will be seamless. When a license is lapsed, there are more fees and potentially CE’s that will be required for you to reactive your license.
Please visit the NJ State Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy website and click “Laws and Regulations” for a complete copy of the Statute and Rules governing your license.
We would like to draw your attention to the following sections of N.J.A.C.13:37A for your considerations:
- 13:37A-2.3 RENEWAL OF LICENSE
f) A licensee who fails to submit a renewal application within 30 days of license expiration shall have his or her license suspended without a hearing.
- 13:37A-2.4 LINCESE REACTIVATION
a) A licensee who holds an inactive license pursuant to N.J.A.C 13:37A-2.3(d) may apply to the Board for reactivation of an inactive license. A licensee seeking reactivation of an inactive license shall submit:
- The activation renewal fee set forth in N.J.A.C 13:37A-7.1; and
- Evidence of having completed all continuing education credits for the biennial registration period, consistent with the requirements set forth in N.J.A.C 13:37A-4.1.
- 13:37A-7.1 FEE SCHEDULE
Inactive license fee……$60.00
In addition, we would like to provide you with useful information sent out by our lobbyist with regard to “Which businesses may be open and what guidelines must be followed?
During the July 27, 2020 Governor’s briefing, it was announced that Additional Rental Assistance to Small Businesses will be available starting August 10, 2020 at www.njra.us. Financial assistance up to $10,000 can be accessed through applications submitted online only.
We strive to provide accurate and verified information, and hope you find it helpful. Please feel free to share this email with therapists who are not AMTA members. Should you need further clarification, please contact us at GovRel.AMTANJ@gmail.com and stay safe and sound and hydrated!
COVID-19 NJ AMTA GR Update
Dear members and friends,
The NJ State Massage and Bodywork Therapy Board convened a virtual meeting on June 30, 2020. Public members were able to attend without comment. Comments for the Board were submitted prior to the meeting and all were considered for reply during the meeting. The following is a brief summary of those discussions:
Replies to Agenda Items:
- In reply to the ability for the licensees to provide in-home therapy, the Deputy Attorney General confirmed that in accordance with **DCA AO 202-19 Sect. 5.k. home visits are not permitted at this time.
NJ AMTA GR investigated further for the reason, and it is because there are no substantial guidelines to assure a safe and sanitary environment for the licensee and the client/patient.
- In reply to how the Board will require proof of CE’s and CPR, the Deputy Attorney General assured that measures are in place for renewal to declare completion of requirements. Currently CPR renewal certification classes are available in person by some providers. The written portion for some CPR certification providers is available on-line. The Board will seek clarification if approved CPR providers allow for on-line skills renewal as well.
- The Deputy Attorney General informed the public that the NJ State Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy does not have the authority to waive renewal fees or extend renewal dates for license renewal. The Division of Consumer Affairs has the authority to consider extending the license renewal date.
- In reply to the concern of “Right to Refuse Treatment,” Board members discussed and agreed that if clients/patients present with untoward symptoms then they are turned away in accordance with **DCA AO 2020-19 Sect. 2.h&i. The Board members reminded the public that licensees are required to conduct two screenings prior to the scheduled appointment in accordance with ** DCA AO 2020-19 Sect. 2.
Public Questions/Comments and Replies:
- Question was asked about air purifiers and their use:
The Deputy Attorney General replied that these are not mandatory and stated that if a place of business or private practice plan to use such a devise, that it should be one that uses a HEPA filter.
- Question was asked about the use of masks, goggles/shields and disposable gowns:
The Board members informed the public that surgical masks are single use and that N95 need to be sanitized; Goggles/shields are not mandatory for LMT’s, disposable gowns although useful, are not mandatory…it is a recommendation as an option.
Please note: On Friday, June 26, 2020, Governor Murphy issued *** Executive Order 157, amending Executive Order 154, allowing licensees of the Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy to perform services that require removal of a client’s face covering as of 6:00 AM on Thursday, July 2, 2020.
Should you provide face massage, please consider using a face shield/goggles for eye protection.
- Question was asked should licensees work with people who have recovered from COVID-19:
Board chairman replied that clients/patients should have medical clearance from their primary healthcare provider before receiving massage and bodywork therapy following any illness, injury or chronic pain, as we usually do and as we are trained to do so.
- Question was asked if we can provide therapy for person who present asymptomatic:
The Board discussion concluded that there is no real answer because we cannot know if a person is asymptomatic at any given moment.
- Question was asked if we can provide Chair Massage offsite:
Board member answered YES as long as all precautions are followed and masks are worn at all times during indoor events.
The Board concluded the public portion of the meeting with a Public Hearing to summarily revoke a license. The licensee opposed and rejected the decision and due to technical difficulties, the hearing was rescheduled.
The next schedule meeting of the NJ Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy is August 25, 2020.
We hope this helps provide you with current information as it relates to the NJ State Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy meeting of June 30, 2020.
In the meantime, your GR Committee needs you help with information about your ability to practice in your community. As we remain active in seeking ways to provide ease of practice in our local communities, we would like to hear from our members who may have experienced, or are currently experiencing difficulty with license and ordinance rules when opening private practices or clinics.
Please reach out to us with you comments, experiences, or questions at GovRel.AMTANJ@gmail.com
These are extraordinary times that require extraordinary patience.
DISCLAIMER: This summary is not to be misconstrued as the NJ State MBT Board minutes of the meeting. Those minutes will be posted when ratified by the Board. This summary is provided by the AMTA-NJ Chapter representatives who attended the meeting.
For your reference, please find these useful links:
A.O. 2020-09 Reopening of Personal Care Services
Executive Order No. 157
AMTA National Website
In response to the may concerns received this past week with regard to the COVID-19 “return-to-work” orders from the Governor’s Office issued on June 13, 2020, please refer to the information below. These orders EO-154 and DCA AO No. 2020-09 are not permanent.
Question #1: CAN I MAKE HOUSE CALLS?
Answer: We are awaiting clarification from the NJ Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy about the conflicting language contained in Execuitve ORder 154 and DCA Administrative Order 2020-09, regarding the ability to provide residential visits. We know that a large segment of licensees have practices that are exclusively based on residential visits. We support the rights of all licensees to work, and seek a more equitable solution for a return to work as permitted by the Governor. We hope to hear from the NJ State MBT Board at their virtual meeting Tuesday, June 30, 2020 at 9:00 AM.
To attend the NJ State MBT Board meeting, go to: https://www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/mbt
To find the agenda, scroll down to left index under “Board Home” and click on “Meetings”
Question #2: CAN I PROVIDE FACE MASSAGE?
Answer: NO… pursuant to DCA Administrative ORder No. 2020-09 #4.a.: No services may be performed that would require the removal of the client’s face covering, except that a client may remove their face covering when face down on a massage table.
We can still provide forehead, scalp massage and ear reflexology.
Question #3: WHAT DOES THE NJ STATE MBT BOARD DO?
Answer: The Board administer the Law and Rules that regulate the license to practice. You can find this defined in: N.J.S.A.45:11-59 Duties, responsibilities of board.
In addition, we have added some useful links that may help as you return to your practice and businesses.
If you have good reason to refuse a return-to-work notice by your employer, please visit NJ Department of Labor & Workforce Development page on “Returning to Work Amid COVID-19”
One Jersey Pledge Posters are available for printing and posting in your business as the NJ COVID-19 Information Hub.
Lastly, AMTA-NJ Chapter Board and Government Relations are acutely aware of the reference to the practice of massage therapy by lawmakers as “massage parlors.” We can all agree that this is an offensive label. In that vein, GR is actively seeking to have that label removed and replaced with current and professional terminology.
As always, please reach out to GovRel.AMTANJ@gmail.com should you have questions or concerns.
Best wishes to all of our members and licensees as we return to work and continue providing comfort and a sense of well-being to our clients and patients. Stay safe and sound.
AMTA NJ Government Relations Committee
AMTA NJ Government Relations Update
Consistent with what other states have done, the Governor’s office planned to gradually reopen personal care services beginning on June 22nd. This was not in response to lobbying efforts from any corporate entity, but rather as part of the Governor’s second phase of re-opening, similar to that of our neighboring states.
AMTA has been working for weeks with the Governor’s office to provide recommendations for the safe re-opening of massage and bodywork therapy, and that effort is reflected in the guidance distributed below. In addition, we have added some useful links that may help as you return to your practice and business.
If you have good reason to refuse a return to work notice by your employer, please visit NJ Department of Labor Worker Protections.
One Jersey Pledge Posters are available for printing and posting in your business at New Jersey COVID-19 Information Hub
As a reminder, all licensees are required to follow sanitary rules in accordance with N.J.C.A.13:37A-3.2 Infection control precautions. The Governor’s order provides that adding enhanced sanitary protocol is permissible.
Please visit the NJ State MBT website for a copy of the REVISED regulations.
Should you need further clarification, please reach out to GovRe.email@example.com
Best wishes to all of our members and licensees as we return to work and continue providing comfort and a sense of well-being to our clients and patients. Stay safe and sound.
NJ AMTA Government Relations Committee.
COVID-19 Press Information
Governor Murphy Signs Executive Order Allowing Personal Care Services to Open
Effective June 22
Governor Phil Murphy today signed Executive Order No. 154, allowing personal care service facilities to reopen to the public on Monday, June 22 at 6:00 AM, provided the facilities comply with standards issued by the Division of Consumer Affairs Department of Health.
“We’re able to confidently announce this important step in our restart and recovery because the health metrics tell us we can,” said Governor Murphy. “With the proper health and safety protocols in place, personal care business owners who are anxious to get back to servicing their customers and communities will have the opportunity to do so.”
Under the Governor’s Executive Order, personal care service facilities include:
- Cosmetology shops;
- Barber shops;
- Beauty salons;
- Hair braiding shops;
- Nail salons;
- Electrology facilities;
- Spas, including day spas and medical spas, at which solely elective and cosmetic medical procedures are preformed;
- Massage parlors;
- Tanning salons; and
- Tattoo parlors.
The Division of Consumer Affairs today issued an Administrative Order that includes comprehensive health and safety standards that personal care services who are licensees of the New Jersey State Board of Cosmetology and Hairstyling and the New Jersey Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy must abide by.
- Limiting services to appointment-only;
- Performing health screening, including temperature checks, on clients and staff prior to entry to the facility;
- Requiring use of personal protective equipment, and requiring clients to wear face coverings at all times, regardless of the service they are receiving, unless face down on a massage table or where doing so would inhibit an individual’s health;
- Ensuring that all staff-client pairs maintain at least six feet distance between other staff-client pairs, unless separated by physical barriers;
- Adopting enhanced cleaning and disinfection practices; and
- Staying informed about new developments and guidance related to COVID-19.
The Order further directs the Commissioner of the DOH to issue health and safety standards for use by tattoo parlors, tanning salons and other locations in which personal care services are offered by individuals who are not acting within the scope of a license issued by a professional board within the Division of Consumer Affairs.
Nothing in the Order shall prevent the provision of services to a person that is confined to their home and unable to travel due to a disability, if these services 1) are permitted under existing statutes and regulations and 2) are provided in a manner that substantially complies with the standards issued by the Division of Consumer Affairs and DOH. DOH issued an Executive Directive today that includes comprehensive health and safety standards for these locations.
Cosmetology schools or other places that provide instruction and training for personal care services shall remain closed at this time.
For a copy of Executive Order No. 154, please click here.
For a copy of the Division of Consumer Affairs’ Administrative Order, please click here.
For a copy of the Department of Health’s Executive Directive, please click here.