Can a Nurse Practitioner Own a Medical Spa in California?

California has strict regulations when it comes to owning and operating a medical spa. In order to comply with the state's corporate practice of medicine laws, most shares of a medical spa must be owned by a California-licensed doctor. No more than 49% of the shares can be owned by any other health professional, and no layman can own a medical corporation. Doctors must own the office or be employed by the medical corporation or company, which is also owned by licensed doctors.

It is not allowed to “rent a license” by hiring a doctor, an osteopathic doctor or a naturopathic doctor. Non-doctors, such as nurses, cannot have an ownership stake in a medical business either. In Texas, nurse practitioners, beauticians, and other non-doctors cannot own a medical spa. However, they can participate in the day-to-day operations of a medical spa through a Management Services Organization (MSO).

Unlike certain cosmetic facilities, such as laser hair removal clinics, medical spas do not require an installation license. The name of the doctor (or that of your professional medical corporation) should appear in ads about Med Spa treatments. California law states that only a doctor who is licensed or under the direct supervision of a licensed physician may perform procedures involving lasers and other intense pulsed light devices. It is worth your time and money to work with a business lawyer who will guide you and help you complete your medical spa requirements in California and operate in no time.

Knowing the laws and regulations of medical spas in California before taking any action can save you a lot of time and money. Violating the Doctrine of Corporate Practice of Medicine can lead to civil liability, administrative sanctions, and even criminal sanctions. Physicians who own Med Spas are at risk of medical license violations and investigations as a result of these entities entering their medical practices. And violations of California Medical Board regulations and California laws by a doctor owner can mean loss of medical license, fines, criminal charges and penalties, and possible incarceration. While a physician assistant may own minority shares in a medical spa or serve as a minority partner with a doctor or doctors, other healthcare providers, such as nurse practitioners and non-medical professionals, cannot do so. The use of the term medical spa is for advertising purposes to make the procedures look more attractive.

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