The Human Touch Initiative.

Some Rochester, NY,  Cancer patients may soon have the opportunity to receive free, or low cost massage Therapy treatments thanks
to a new service to be offered by the Human Touch Initiative.

HTI held a fundraising event on July 4th and plans to begin oncology massage services this fall. To get services, cancer patients will fill out a form, not yet on the Web site, seeking a voucher for free or reduced-price massage therapy from a list of local licensed providers who've had training in oncology massage. Eventually the program wants to offer decongestive lymphatic therapy, guided meditation and yoga/movement therapies.

This is great news for Cancer patients as the rewards both physically and mentally that one can receive from having a massage are tremendous.
I can only imagine the benefits people in such fragile conditions can receive.

There have been many different research studies over the years headed mainly by the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami, FL

One of their studies regarding patients with Breast Cancer found that regular massage reduced anxiety and depression, as well as improved immune function and an increased number in natural killer cells.

Benefits of massage therapy for cancer patients may include:

  • Pain Reduction

  • Increase Relaxation

  • Stimulate Lymphatic System

  • Reduce Muscle Tension

  • Feel Better, Do Better


However lets hope not all of our massage therapists are jumping up and down to get their hands on a Cancer patient as a client.
Oncology massage is specifically adapted for individuals of all ages and types of cancer and patients should only receive massage therapy from a therapist educated in oncology massage. A therapist uneducated in the adaptations of these styles and proper techniques actually can cause the cancer patient to develop different conditions.

Kim Ross, a Licensed Massage Therapist and the Director of the Human Touch Initiative hits the nail on the head when she says that most Doctors as well as patients are
unaware of the benefits of massage. It's great to see such a pioneer for the practice, a kindred spirit who also strives to raise the awareness of the Benefits of Massage Therapy within the medical community.

Massage Therapy is a complimentary therapy, it is certainly not a replacement for traditional medical practice, but if we could only work together I think we could serve patients more effectively and more cost efficiently than we do now.