Our healthcare and business law firm works with many providers and other allied health professionals who are beginning their journeys of opening a Medical Spa. Medical Spas have been growing in popularity across the country. Medical Spas are unique practices in that they involve many medical and non-medical procedures. There are many factors to consider in opening a medical spa, and this series focuses on key factors to consider when opening a medical spa in Georgia. Although our healthcare law firm has assisted numerous clients in establishing a medical spa from the ground up, each client continues to present unique issues requiring our firm to research and analyze the nuances of each client’s intended setup. This Georgia Medical Spa Series is intended to provide a useful overview of some key laws, rules, and regulations impacting medical spas.
This post in the Georgia Medical Spa Series focuses on the use of an Esthetician in a medical spa. If you have questions regarding this blog post or would like to speak with counsel regarding opening your medical spa practice, you may contact us at (404) 685-1662 (Atlanta) or (706) 722-7886 (Augusta), or by email, email@example.com. You may also learn more about our law firm by visiting www.hamillittle.com.
The use of an esthetician in a medical spa is more limited than many of our clients think before coming to us. Under Georgia Code Section 43-10-1, an Esthetician is:
[A]n individual who, for compensation, engages in any one or a combination of the following practices, esthetics, or cosmetic skin care:
(A) Massaging the face, neck, décolletage, or arms of an individual;
(B) Trimming, tweezing, shaping, or threading eyebrows;
(C) Dyeing eyelashes or eyebrows or applying eyelash extensions; or
(D) Waxing, threading, stimulating, cleansing, or beautifying the face, neck, arms, torso, or legs of an individual by any method with the aid of the hands or any mechanical or electrical apparatus or by the use of a cosmetic preparation.
Such practices of esthetics shall not include the diagnosis, treatment, or therapy of any dermatological condition or medical esthetics or the use of lasers. Such term shall not apply to an individual whose activities are limited to the application of cosmetics during the production of film, television, or musical entertainment or to the application of cosmetics in a retail environment in which cosmetics are marketed to individuals and are readily commercially available to consumers.
O.C.G.A. § 43-10-1(8).
As explained further below, an esthetician without any additional license cannot perform many of the major services/treatments offered by most medical spas. An esthetician can perform certain laser treatments if he/she gains an Assistant Laser Practitioner license.
The definition of an “esthetician” under Georgia law specifically excludes the use of lasers. However, estheticians may apply to be Assistant Laser Practitioners. Assistant Laser Practitioners can operate “laser hair removal, intense pulsed light devised, and non-ablative light-based devices.” Cosmetic Laser Practitioner FAQ, available here. The GCMB has implied through its meeting minutes that an esthetician, even with an Assistant Laser Practitioner License, may not perform ablative laser procedures. May 6, 2021 GCMB Meeting minutes.
In addition, the Medical Board has provided: “Esthetician can only do hair removal and intense pulsed light treatments without the doctor being on site.” June 4, 2015 GCMB Meeting Minutes. Any treatments other than hair removal and intense pulsed light treatments, thus, must be performed with a physician or appropriate mid-level provider on site.
An esthetician cannot administer IV therapy. It is not within an esthetician’s scope of duties nor is there an appropriate license similar to a laser license to allow an esthetician to administer an IV.
An esthetician may not administer Botox or other fillers. Specifically, the GCMB has stated: “Injection of botulinum toxin and soft tissue fillers does not fall within the scope of practice for estheticians.” Mar. 4, 2021 GCMB Meeting Minutes.
If you have questions regarding this blog post or need counsel relating to your professional responsibilities after an arrest or conviction, you may contact us at (404) 685-1662 (Atlanta) or (706) 722-7886 (Augusta), or by email, firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also learn more about our law firm by visiting www.hamillittle.com.
*Disclaimer: Thoughts shared here do not constitute legal advice.