Many forms of pain treatment are available, including massage, psychological, and medicinal. U-M Health’s Back and Pain Center has recently introduced a new method to patients who have been gaining popularity and seeing great success.
The Healing Touch Program (H.T.P.) is here. The center offers a variety of non-pharmacological pain relief options. This program is non-invasive, cost-effective, non-toxic, and economically viable. It is described by the center as a “relaxing and nurturing energy therapy that balances emotions, mental, and spiritual well-being.” The body is restored to balance and relaxation through gentle, deliberate touch.
Becky Bail (R.N., C.H.T.P., RYT200) has shepherded Healing Touch’s popularity and inception.
Bail, a registered nurse for almost 30 years, has a background in pediatric cardiology and is a certified healing touch practitioner. Touch practitioners are professionally trained individuals who place their hands near or on a patient’s body while seated or lying down. They use standardized techniques.
Bail was tasked with launching Healing Touch in March 2020 as part of the university’s Rewrite the Script initiative, which is led by Paul Hilliard M.D.
It almost fell to the ground.
“More important than ever.”
Bail stated, “I couldn’t believe the pandemic hit.” The opioid crisis is making it so difficult for us to move forward. It’s gotten worse since COVID-19. “Our program is more important than ever.”
It was challenging to start and grow the project during the pandemic, but it did succeed. Bail and her coworkers studied 47 patients and measured their results from July 2020 to March 2021. Precise results showed significant reductions in distress and severity of symptoms after the intervention.
The program’s focus is on self-empowerment and self-care. It thrives because of its holistic approach and team-oriented structure. Due to high demand, the clinic doubled the number of nurses within the program after the first year.
“The program embraces the community-centric identity,” stated Vanessa Shamany-Fakhoury, M.B.A., M.H.A.A., R.N. Senior nursing director for Ambulatory Care. She also oversees Neurosciences & Behavioral Health, Comprehensive Musculoskeletal Center, and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Michigan Medicine offers this type of treatment because it needs it.
Alex Smith, M.S.W. screens patients to determine which components are most compatible. The assessment will be completed by either Bail or Tina Berkholz (R.N.), a fellow healing touch nurse. The nurses will explain the healing touch, discuss the patient’s story and help them set goals.
Many components can be included in the treatment sessions, including Healing Touch interventions, meditation, imagery, and energy assessments. Patients are asked to provide pain and distress scores before and after appointments. A self-care plan is then provided for patients to continue their treatment.
Bail stated, “The self-care program, it’s big deal.” “It’s key. “I don’t want to see you leave until you have had enough.
The entire Back and Pain Center supported bail. It has many satellite offices throughout Southeast Michigan, including the Burlington Building at East Eisenhower Parkway in Ann Arbor.
Madhavi P. Ann, the center’s operations manager, is a crucial member. Madhavi P. Anne, the operations manager, has been recognized for providing the resources needed to make the clinic a “well-oiled machine.” It is incredible the center’s collaborative nature.
Ronald A. Wasserman M.D. F.R.C.P.C., a division chief at the Back and Pain Center, stated, “The fact the program was able to grow and prosper tells you its strength.” “We are thrilled to have this program and will continue to grow it as it shows success.”
The team plans to continue helping as many patients as possible and will try to expand their services to other U-M Health facilities. Bail, Berkholz, and the entire Back and Pain Center staff will continue to support patients and pursue positive outcomes through U-M Health’s Healing Touch Program.