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What Are The Requirements for Opening A Medical Spa In Florida?

an aesthetician performs a dermal filler treatment on a client

Please read the disclaimer at the bottom of this article after you finish reading.

Opening a medical spa can seem like an appealing business venture, especially if you take into account the increased demand for cosmetic procedures. With new innovations in beauty treatments and more skincare products hitting the shelves every day, a medical spa can be a potentially lucrative investment.
So what are the requirements for opening a medical spa in a state like Florida? As it turns out, Florida’s current rules and legislation about the ownership and operation of medical spas are good for anyone that wants to create and set up in the state. As long as you keep in mind the common things that owners can stumble with, you’ll be on your way to managing your own medical spa in no time.

What Makes Florida Friendly for Potential Medical Spa Owners?

The regulations for a medical spa have some standards to follow across state lines – namely, the ones instituted by the Department of Health. But the state itself has a lot of power and oversight over medical spa ownership and operation, which is where the rules governing Florida come in.

Unlike many states, you don’t actually need a medical license to own a medical spa. This means anyone can get into the industry of owning a medical spa fairly easily, so long as they manage to submit their legal requirements to the state’s regulators.

This makes the state of Florida extremely attractive for anyone looking to invest in a medical spa but would otherwise be blocked by usual state regulations about ownership, ensuring both compliance and profitability at the same time.

Steps to Follow When Setting Up A Medical Spa in Florida

So what exactly should potential business owners look into when trying to set up a medical spa with Florida’s loose regulations? Here are some steps to start with:

1. Find A Healthcare Attorney

Even if anyone can own a medical spa, keep in mind that all other regulations surrounding the administration of your services still fall under the jurisdiction of the Department of Health. Finding a healthcare attorney can be a good way to mitigate any legal pitfalls that your application will run into with Florida’s state regulators.

2. Set Up Your Business Model

Establish your medical spa as a business entity, and make sure to get your federal tax employer identification number (EIN) before operating. You should also get your insurance in order, specifically your business insurance and the personal liability insurance of your staff. This stage also includes everything you’ll need to run the business side of your medical spa, from hiring accountants to setting up your own marketing team.

3. Comply With Legal Requirements

Even if you don’t need to set up a management services agreement (MSA) to own a medical spa in Florida, there are other legal requirements that you need to comply with before operating. Patient forms, informed consent, HIPAA compliance, and OSHA regulations are all crucial elements of making sure your medical spa has the legal right to operate in the state.

4. Establishing a Good Clinical Operations Setup

Finally, you need to find the right staff to administer the treatments that your medical spa is going to provide. Appointing a medical director, finding the right providers, and putting your staff through the proper training are all essential to creating an efficient clinical environment that your clients can trust.

Special Considerations for Florida

However, this doesn’t mean that Florida’s essentially a free-for-all state for anyone looking to set up a medical spa. While it’s easy to get into the door of setting up a medical spa, Florida actually has some strict rulings about medical spas that potential owners can often run into.

Here are 3 particular areas of concern that any potential owner should resolve:

1. Medical Spa Ownership vs. Operations

Florida can be very progressive with the consideration of anyone being able to own a medical spa – however, ownership and operations are two key areas that are defined very clearly in Florida law. While anyone can own a medical spa in the state, the rules clearly say that only a medical professional should be allowed to administer and be in charge of treatments.

What does this mean for owners? Here are a few considerations:

  • Appointing a registered doctor who can practice in Florida as your medical director
  • Creating a clear line of responsibility between ownership and operational oversight
  • Ensuring that everyone administering treatments has a medical license
  • Administering training for OSHA and HIPAA compliance for all staff
  • Establish the appropriate protocols for each treatment with the help of your providers

Typically, your licensed healthcare physician in charge should have the experience and qualifications to supervise treatments. Even if they have a medical background related to the treatments that you’ll provide, they can’t oversee operations if they don’t have the license for it – for example, an OB-GYN being in charge of vaginal rejuvenation treatments.

A good analogy to keep in mind for would-be owners without a medical license is that they’re the enablers of the services provided by their med spa. They can make decisions about marketing, branding, and other concerns about their services. However, hands-on decisions about the administration and treatment of their clients should be left to their medical physicians.

2. Application of Botox and Other Similar Injectable Treatments

Another issue that medical spa owners and administrators need to contend with is the specific rules and regulations about the application of injectable treatments like Botox and dermal fillers. According to the Board of Nursing, these treatments can only be done by the following:

  • Medical doctors (MDs)
  • Doctors of osteopathy (ODs)
  • Nurse practitioners (NPs)
  • Physician assistants (PAs)

Notably, this opinion excludes registered nurses (RNs) from injecting Botox or other similar injectables. Given that facial fillers and Botox treatments are a mainstay of a medical spa’s services, potential owners should keep this in mind when choosing to hire their staff for this type of procedure.

This doesn’t mean that RNs are forbidden from participating in any part of the Botox/injectable filler treatment. The rules only specify that they can’t administer the injection itself; they can still be involved in other ways like taking care of the patient after their treatments and being the primary point of contact for consultations.

3. Florida’s Anti-Kickback Laws

Florida’s regulations about kickbacks can throw some confusion about how much your physicians should actually get paid, especially if the physician is already in a position to refer patients to the medical spa.

Owners should keep in mind that:

  • Any form of financial incentives between your providers and your med spa can be unlawful
  • Violations are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, willful or knowing conduct aside
  • Physicians are not allowed to refer patients to your med spa

By keeping these regulations in mind, your medical spa (and your medical staff) can prevent any potential violations of Florida’s anti-fraud regulations regarding healthcare. In general, your patients should come to you because of marketing and other external factors: in no way should they be admitted because someone on your staff told them to come.

Breaking Florida’s anti-kickback laws can have harsh penalties, ranging from the removal of your operating license to convicting your medical professionals with felonies. It can be surprisingly easy to break any of these regulations – so make sure your staff is aware of these rules and their repercussions.

Get High-Quality Medical Tools and Supplies at FACE Med Store Today

Florida law surrounding the setup, ownership, and operation of a medical spa can be extremely favorable compared to other states – but if you’re thinking of setting one up, you should definitely make sure that you keep up to date with the state ruling and regulations.

FACE Med Store has been the proud partner of many different medical and cosmetic practices across the state, providing them with supplies that enable their services. With our many years of experience, we have a unique insight into the needs of the general public with their medical supplies and provide our products at accessible rates.

For more information about our products or stocks, visit our website today.

Disclaimer:

The information and answers contained in this article provide a general guide to certain laws that apply to “medical spas” and cosmetic medical treatment in this particular state. The information on this site is for general reference only and its accuracy cannot be guaranteed as medical spa legalities and regulations change very frequently. This information is not intended to provide legal advice, and it should not be relied upon as legal advice. This information is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. To our readers: You should not act upon this information without seeking knowledgeable legal counsel that takes the laws of your jurisdiction into account.

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