Hospital Based Massage Therapy Practice Basics

presented by Lauren Cates

Accreditation Check:

This course, with Lauren Cates, introduces students to the unique aspects of hospital-based massage techniques, environment and process. Lauren will introduce the mechanics of hand placement, pressure and position adjustments that are unique to the hospital setting. She will also introduce interpersonal and emotional skills that are equally if not more important than the technical skills necessary for hospital-based practice. Introduce essential tools for effective patient/practitioner communication. Ultimately, students will explore ways of reframing “massage” to increase understanding and acceptance for medically compromised and frail patients in the hospital setting. The course concludes with a question and answer session with a practicing massage therapist.

Meet Your Instructor

  • Lauren Cates, LMT

    Lauren Cates, LMT

    Lauren is a Virginia-based graduate of the Potomac Massage Training Institute and the Metta Institute’s End of Life Care Practitioner Program. She has had unique opportunities to train with national leaders in the field of oncology massage and end of life care and has built an intensive clinical massage therapy program at Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington, VA. Lauren also co-founded a non-profit organization which provides clinical education for massage therapists, participates in massage therapy research and provides service to people (pediatric and adult) living with acute, chronic and terminal illness. Lauren is a certified massage therapist, Reiki practitioner and volunteer massage therapist with Capital Caring hospice. In addition to continuing education courses for massage therapists and social workers, Lauren is one of a teaching triad completed by two seasoned hospice nurses which offers workshops to educate and support caregivers of all kinds.

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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  1. Hospital Massage: The Basics

    1. Hospital Massage: The Basics

    In the first chapter of this course, Lauren Cates compares and contrasts private practice/non-clinical massage with hospital-based massage. In particular, she introduces the essential aspects of the imperative of professionalism (demeanor, attire, preparation, Interprofessional communication).

  2. Tools for Hospital Based Massage

    2. Tools for Hospital Based Massage

    In this chapter, Lauren Cates discusses the essential internal and external tools of a hospital-based massage therapist, and orients the participant to the hospital setting, and standard procedures. Lauren emphasizes the importance of easing into the environment, and provides strategies for educating others about the role of the massage therapist in this setting.

  3. The Massage Session Part One

    3. The Massage Session Part One

    This chapter tackles the nuts and bolts of the massage session in a hospital environment. Methods for assessing common obstacles in hospital rooms and other settings are discussed, as well as adjustments for specific medical conditions and medical appliances. Lauren Cates also covers pressure, position and site adjustments, as well as strategies for communicating with patients.

  4. The Massage Session Part Two

    4. The Massage Session Part Two

    In the final chapter of this course, Lauren Cates wraps up the hypothetical massage session by discussing the concept of “less is more” avoiding harm, and by applying concepts around reframing massage therapy in the hospital setting. The course concludes with a discussion with a practicing massage therapist to address common questions on this topic.