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Kalama massage therapist renews license after practicing with expired credentials

A Kalama massage therapist has an active license after her credentials expired about 10 years ago, according to the state Department of Health.

Sara Hutchinson, owner of Better Health Massage, applied to renew her massage therapist license on July 26, 2021, after it had expired in 2011, according to Department of Health records. Hutchinson’s license was first issued in 2008.

“I made a mistake allowing my license to lapse and it’s been taken care of,” she said. “I have my license and I’m practicing full time again.”

Hutchinson said she did not work for three months during the license renewal process. The state issued the new license on Aug. 31 and it expires January 28, 2022, according to the department. Under state law, massage therapist credentials must be renewed every year on the practitioner’s birthday.

The state Department of Health sends a courtesy renewal reminder about 90 days prior to expiration, according to a department spokesperson. The notice is sent to the address on record with the department, and providers are required to maintain a current address with the state. The same process was in place in 2011.

The department does not send a notification after someone’s credentials expire.

Disciplinary actions are complaint driven, according to the department. In July, the department received two complaints of Hutchinson operating without a valid license, one case is closed and the other is under investigation. No enforcement action has been taken against Hutchinson.

Hutchinson is running for Kalama City Council Position 1 in the November general election.

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