“It is not…necessary to avoid massage the day before or after chemotherapy, assuming that the practitioner is trained to adjust their work in a way that will be safe and supportive for the client.” - Gayle MacDonald
Oncology Massage Limited is a nationally and internationally recognised not for profit training charity. It is dedicated to training fully qualified massage and Bowen therapists to treat those with a diagnosis or history of cancer effectively and safely. It aims to ensure national benchmarks and standards of care are met by its therapists. The four module program is based on a program that has been running for more than 10 years in the United States.
Importantly, formal training in this specialised area provides therapists with the awareness and expertise to modify and adjust a conventional massage for the client with a history or diagnosis of cancer while being mindful of any contraindications for massage. This ensures the provision of a safe and effective treatment for the client.
OM Ltd are leaders on the world stage, with a nationally standardised training program for oncology massage therapists in Australia and in New Zealand (more recently). We are the only OM training organisation globally who can offer the same program across their entire country and therefore demand the same standards of care and professionalism from the therapists we train. We proudly uphold the standards of S4OM, which exists to support and educate massage therapists, consumers and health professionals about the value and specific considerationss and applications of oncology massage. Their vision to support the safe delivery of massage to people who have been diagnosed with cancer, to promote an oncology massage education standard and to collaborate in research are values that are evident in the OM Ltd stategic plan.
We have a comprehensive facilitator training program that requires an advanced level of OM training and experience, advance MLD training, a Cert IV in Training and Assessment and completion of our internal training process. This program involves attendance at a minimum of four of each module, with increasing levels of responsibilities as they progress, and then bi-annual performance appraisals. This level of teacher-training is vital to maintain the survivorship, treatment and psychological management in a professional and consistent manner.
OM Ltd has developed and had approved (by ASQA) a Cert IV and Diploma in Oncology Massage. We are seeking a suitable and ethical RTO to deliver the program or funding to develop a specialist complementary therapies college to deliver cancer support focussed modalities. The program has the support and encouragement of the medical community but no funding. Therein lies a unique opportunity for Australia to become world leaders in OM training, with a commitment to excellence that would bring international recognition.
Since June 2014, the OM Ltd Board of Directors have been working on the first Strategic Plan for the charity. We are very excited to share this summary document with you and show you the direction that we will be heading in over the next three years. Donations are becoming increasingly important, as is community involvement. Your continued support and contribution to OM awareness and OM best practice are much appreciated. Please click here to see the summary.
Why Oncology Massage?
For Symptom Management, research has shown Oncology Massage improves the quality of life for people with a history or diagnosis of cancer.
It reduces the side effects experienced from conventional treatment of cancer and the symptoms of the disease process itself (Cassileth and Vickers, 2004)
- Pain Improved 47%
- Fatigue Improved 42%
- Anxiety Improved 59%
- Nausea Improved 51%
- Depression Improved 48%
- Other (including shortness of breath, memory problems, dry mouth or disturbed sleep) improved 48%
Light touch massage, as taught by Oncology Massage Limited (OML) was the most effective form of massage therapy offered in this study.
If you are a massage therapist, qualified Bowen or other tactile therapist and would like to specialise in Oncology Massage please visit the Module One page to find out more about our training modules or Contact Us.
Oncology Massage Limited is an internationally recognised course with the Society for Oncology Massage - S4OM.
Cassileth BR, Vickers AJ, 2004, Massage Therapy for Symptom Control: Outcome Study at a Major Cancer Centre, Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, 28:3:244-250