This article was originally published as “2017 Proposed Changes to Nevada State’s Massage Therapy Law” on 2/20/2017; it has been updated as of 6/5/2017.
NRS 640.C governs the massage therapy profession and the professionals who are licensed by the Nevada State Board of Massage Therapists (NSBMT). In late-2016, with their newest Executive Director, Sandy Anderson, the NSBMT asked Honorable Assemblywoman Maggie Carlton to sponsor a Bill that would primarily change the constituency of licensees holding professional licenses under the NSBMT. There are several additional points to the Bill, as it was written and Introduced by Assemblywoman Carlton, that, as massage therapists, affect us.
The Bill was first known as BDR 766 when introduced on December 10, 2016, and had been formally introduced to the Assembly as AB 179 on February 13, 2017, and is now resolved* to do several things:
- Change the name of the board: from the “Nevada State Board of Massage Therapists” to the “Nevada State Board of Massage Therapy“
- Add two new license types to the currently-existing Licensed Massage Therapists, et al: Licensed Reflexologist, et al; and, Licensed Structural Integration Practitioner, et al. Reflexology is moved from under NRS 629 “Wellness Services” to NRS 640.C; Structural Integration Practitioner is a newly-created license under this Bill. Each new license has its own educational, legal, and Application requirements (TBD by NSBMT-mediated Workshop (dates TBD)).
- Change the composition of the NSBMT: from 7 Board Members to 9 Board Members: the 2 additional Board members are – one each – from the newly-added fields to the NSBMT’s domain: a NSBMT-licensed Reflexologist and an NSBMT-licensed Structural Integration Practitioner.
- Add Establishments to its regulatory oversight: Massage Therapy, Reflexology, and Structural Integration Establishments are – additionally, to local regulation (if any) – under the Board’s regulation. A [maximum] Inspection Fee of $50 is levied for each Board-initiated Massage Therapy, Reflexology, and Structural Integration Establishment request for inspection.
- Change the license Renewal Period: from every One Year (annually) to every Two Years (biennially) – the Renewal Fee has doubled to $300 but is only required every two years.
The Nevada School of Massage Therapy hosted a live Q & A Session on February 27, 2017, where the AMTA-Nevada Chapter presented this information and opened up the floor for comments and questions. About 33 people were in attendance, the majority of which were matriculating students of NSMT’s program, including NSMT staff, AMTA members, and MT professionals. The session lasted about 45 minutes and was presented by Chapter President Mavies Gascon and Immediate Past President David Otto.
The Nevada Chapter members were email-noticed on 3/14 & 3/26/2017 to participate in a poll available during the period of 3/14-3/28/2017 as to their positions and opinions on AB 179. Subsequent to the closing of the poll, Nevada Chapter President Mavies Gascon attended a May 5th public hearing of the Committee on Commerce, Labor and Energy regarding Amendment(s)-considered and reported the chapter members’ position of Support for AB 179. Here is the crux of what he reported:
*The Act AB 179 was signed into law, recorded June 1, 2017, and goes into effect as of July 1, 2017. The NSBMT is anticipating that licenses for Reflexologists and Structural Integration Practitioners will be available for application and required for practice on Jan 1, 2018.
Other NSBMT Updates:
- Completed inspections of Nevada Massage Therapy Establishments by the NSBMT have resulted in 18 closures during the January to May, 2017, time-frame.
- The NSBMT is committed to a “less than 15-day turnaround” for actions on New and Renewing NSBMT License Applications.
- The NSBMT is removing the ‘Pre-application’ process for license Applications.
- The NSBMT anticipates a software update to the Licensee Account Area that will allow a user to upload/record CEHs being used for his/her next Renewal PRIOR to his/her Renewal Application process and 90-day window prior to expiration of his/her current license period.