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Massage Therapy to Induce Labour is a Breach of the Code of Ethics

CMTBC has recently become aware that some registrants may be using massage therapy to induce labour and further advertise their practice of providing massage therapy for this purpose.

Effective immediately, registrants who currently practice massage therapy with the intention of inducing labour are hereby advised to stop doing so and to amend their advertising materials accordingly.

Definition

Labour induction is the artificial initiation of labour before its spontaneous onset, for the purpose of delivering the feto-placental unit (unborn child).

Code of Ethics, Standards of Practice and Public Safety Issues

The use of massage therapy to induce labour is a breach of section 2 of the College’s Code of Ethics, which requires registrants to act in the best interest of a patient.

The use of massage therapy to induce labour also breaches section 6 of the College’s Standards of Practice (Schedule “D” to the College’s Bylaws), which requires that registrants only practice those therapeutic methods that they have received sufficient training to perform safely.

Labour induction is not within the scope of massage therapy practice. Further, labour induction requires practice competencies that registrants do not possess. Registrants who use massage therapy to induce labour create a risk to public safety, because they are not trained to manage labour or delivery, to carry out appropriate emergency measures during labour or delivery, or to assess, monitor and care for a fetus or newborn.

Other health professionals, midwives and physicians, are permitted to induce labour within their scope of practice, as they have the appropriate medical training.

Any violation of the Code of Ethics may be subject to discipline under the Health Professions Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 183.

If you have any questions, please contact Kate Parisotto, Director of Compliance at the College, at 604.736.3404.

This Notice to the Profession was updated on April 16, 2016.

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