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This is the second edition of a highly successful book – the only one available on this topic. The first edition was written by a well-known massage therapist and author, Gayle MacDonald. For the second edition Gayle has brought in a co-author, Carolyn Tague.  Both are well-known and highly respected in the field of hospital massage therapy.

The second edition focuses solely on the adult patient and has new chapters on aromatherapy massage, end-of-life care, cultural sensitivity and understanding the therapeutic relationship between patient and practitioner.  It also incorporates new sections on addiction and neurological disorders, as well as the most recent research from around the world. The new edition is highly illustrated with full color photographs and drawings, including many new illustrations.


From the Foreword by Ruth Werner BCTMB

‘With Hands in Health Care, Gayle MacDonald and Carolyn Tague have cemented a legacy in the massage therapy field. This beautifully written text is grounded in current research, but it is rich in the grace and compassion that inspire us to serve people who are in need. I love their thoughtful voices, along with their many examples of practical application of basic principles. Reader, you are in for a treat. Thank you, Gayle and Carolyn, for helping to open this pathway for massage therapists. Thank you for reminding us where we came from, and showing us where we can go next. Our profession is better for your contributio

About the authors / Acknowledgments / Figure permissions / Glossary / Preface / Introduction

Holders of a legacy: The evolution of hospital-based massage therapy

A frontier of knowledge: Exploring the research Gayle MacDonald with Carolyn Jauco-Trott

Adapting to hospital culture: Traveling in a foreign land

The spectrum of caring: Understanding the therapeutic relationship

Protecting patients and practitioners: Infection control practices

Pressure, site and position: A clinical framework

An overview of common diseases requiring health care treatment

Common symptoms and conditions: Sign posts for the massage therapist

What’s that beeping? Medical devices and procedures

Pharmaceutical factors: Adjustments for medications

Gathering information: Referrals, orders and intake

One on one: The massage therapy session

Beyond touch: Aromatherapy massage sessions in health care Angela Secretan

Sacred time: Touch at the end of life Cindy Spence

The value of documentation: Charting protocols

Trending into the future: Possibilities and probabilities

Appendix / Test answers / Index

Additional information

Format Paperback, eBook
ISBN 978-1-912085-54-5
Pages 363
Illustrations 70 color photographs and drawings
Dimensions 276x220 mm
Publication Date Dec-20 (UK) & Jan-21 (USA)

Author biography

Gayle MacDonald MS LMT began her career in 1973 as a secondary school health teacher. In 1989, she became a massage therapist, which led to the blending of her first two careers. After finishing massage school, she started teaching Body-Mind education for massage students. A serendipitous phone call in 1993 led her to develop a hospital massage program for cancer patients at Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) in Portland, Oregon. Over time, MacDonald worked with heart transplant patients, women hospitalized because of a high-risk pregnancy, orthopedic and general medicine patients.

Gayle is a pioneer. Her book, Medicine Hands: Massage Therapy for People with Cancer, (Findhorn Press) was pivotal in overcoming the myth that people with cancer could not have massage due to the fear of metastasis. She wrote the first modern hospital massage text, Massage for the Hospital Patient and Medically Frail Patient (Lippincott Williams and Wilkins). It is this book which, in collaboration with Carolyn Tague, she has now rewritten and updated for Handspring. Gayle has travelled and taught in the United States, Canada, Scotland, Ireland, Australia, The Netherlands, and Belgium sharing what she has learned since starting at OHSU 25 years ago.

Carolyn Tague, MA, CMT first studied with Gayle MacDonald in 2005 when the original edition of Massage for the Hospital Patient and Medically Frail Client was published.  Since then she has worked in four hospital systems on six different campuses.  With 15 years teaching experience, taking on an opportunity to coauthor this book was a dream come true.  For six years Tague taught in a hospital based integrative medicine education program and then went on to establish Tague Consulting where she provides continuing education courses including Oncology Massage Therapy, Massage for People Living with Neurological Challenges, Building Therapeutic Relationships, among other courses.  Tague continues to work and teach in hospital settings including UCSF Medical Center and Laguna Honda Hospital as well as maintaining a small private practice.  Tague is a frequent speaker at massage therapy and integrative medicine conferences and participates in hospital based massage therapy research at UCSF.  As part of her professional association work, Tague serves on the Hospital Based Massage Therapy Task Force of the Academic Collaborative for Integrative Health and on the Education Committee of the Society for Oncology Massage.

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