Staying in Touch with Professional Regulations

by Linda Burmeister

Of all the things you have to worry about daily in your business, there are a few that probably rarely cross your mind - that is, until something happens to snap you to attention!

I'm speaking of license renewals (both staff and business), inspections from State Board, and oh - there's the occasional visit from the local fire department to check exits, fire extinguishers, air filters for chemical services, and other items considered hazards. And, if you are in a city or county that requires your massage services to fall under the Health Department (as in Las Vegas), you know that the requirements are very strict.

What it all boils down to is understanding and paying attention to your professional due diligence in staying within the guidelines and requirements of professional regulations in your particular state and City. They can go years without changing, then one day without you being aware, there is an update that could really have an impact on your business.

Professional License and Salon Inspection

No matter whether your business is booth rental or payroll, you should maintain current copies of every employees' license. You would think you wouldn't have to remind them, but you would be surprised at the number of fines imposed during a "drop in" inspection because of lapsed license. Without a license, they have to pack up and leave the premises in most states.

Make sure your business license is current, and if you move to a new location, you must re-submit an application. Inspections occur randomly and may also occur if there are complaints against your establishment. At any rate, standards for sanitation must be upheld at all times and on all levels. This is usually what they are looking for. It would be wise to post reminders of your sanitation and disinfection protocols in your dispensary and have adequate supplies on hand at all times, as well as Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) for all chemicals.

Regular safety meetings would be a good idea to help maintain the highest standards. You may never get an inspection (once you have opened) but if you always operate as if an inspector in going to "drop" in, you will not have any worries.

Scope of Practice

Because of the increase in Medi-spas, and there are now more skin therapists working for physicians, many states have mandated that certain services be considered practices outside the scope of skin and hair care for estheticians and cosmetologists. These practices include Botox, chemical peels, collagen injections, colonics, liposuction, and microdermabrasion (except for light, superficial microdermabrasion). Recent updates include LASER, which is also considered a medical procedure in most states. Any exceptions would be noted on a states' website under rules and regulations (current or amended).

If any of the procedures mentioned above are delegated by a licensed physician, and the person receiving the service is the doctors' patient, the therapist delegated the service must carry out the course of treatment as directed by the doctor's license, but not under the Esthetician or Cosmetology license. This is just one example of how the regulations vary from state to state, so please be guided by your state's regulations. It may be wise to check with your insurance company and attorney as well.

You can sign up to receive your state's email list for updates and reminders regarding regulations for your business, and I recommend you do so - it's worth it!

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Staying in Touch with Professional Regulations