Montana’s Senate Public Health, Welfare and Safety Committee will today hear house bill 662, which would require massage therapists to become state licensed and would establish a Board of Massage Therapists to implement the law.

Currently, 42 states, the District of Columbia and four Canadian provinces offer some type of credential to professionals in the massage and bodywork field – usually licensure, certification or registration.According to a statement released by Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals:

“The bill would allow practitioners to qualify for licensure by signing an affidavit that they have engaged in the practice of massage therapy for at least 100 hours in Montana. Practitioners would be able to qualify under this provision until July 1, 2012.

“After July 1, 2012, applicants would have to complete a minimum 500-hour massage therapy program and pass an exam approved by the board.

“Once a massage therapist is licensed, he or she would have to complete 12 hours of continuing education every 2 years for license renewal.

“Practices exempt from massage therapy licensure, as long as practitioners do not practice or advertise that they practice massage therapy, include: movement education, structural integration, and reflexology.

To view the entire bill go to http://data.opi.mt.gov/bills/2009/billpdf/HB0662.pdf

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