I want to address a very disturbing trend that I am seeing emerge in the medical spa world. Patients are being treated by unqualified office staff at medical spas, with no supervision by any medical professionals.
In my Cosmetic Procedure Injury practice, I have talked to a number of clients that report the same situation. They go to a medical spa for a cosmetic procedure, which they fully except to be performed by a medical professional such as a Physician, Nurse Practitioner, or Physician Assistant but they never actually meet with anyone other than non-medical staff members, who consult with the patients, perform the procedure, and even deal with post-procedure complications. The patient never knows that the person with whom they are dealing is not a medical professional. The office staff wear scrubs and speak authoritatively about the medical procedures. It is not until the patient gets injured and seeks the advice of an experienced attorney that they find out that the person performing the procedure is not licensed to do so.
To protect yourself, you should always check whether the person performing your cosmetic procedure has a Florida medical license with the Board of Medicine or any kind of license with the Department of Business & Professional Regulation.
In Florida, even electrologists who are licensed to work with lasers, to remove unwanted hair, are required to be under the direct supervision of a physician and the physician is required to personally meet with the patient for at least the initial consultation. It is logical that whenever someone is using a medical device to administer a procedure on a patient, they must either have a medical education or be under the close supervision of someone who does.
Unfortunately, as more medical products are becoming available for minimally invasive cosmetic procedures, and cosmetic procedures outside of a plastic surgeon’s office are becoming more popular, physicians are feeling more comfortable delegating the task of administering these procedures to their non-medical staff. Physicians are driven by the money they save on lower-cost staff, which are much cheaper to employ than qualified medical professionals. Many medical spas are owned and managed by non-medical entrepreneurs that do not understand the need for a well-supervised practice, led by a hands-on medical professional.
Many times in my practice, I have seen a single physician “supervise” multiple medical spas around town, where the physician’s sole job is to sign charts without ever seeing a single patient. These absentee supervising physicians are completely oblivious to what is going on in the clinics that they “supervise” and do not know whether the employees performing the medical procedures are following protocol, properly administering the procedures, and adequately advising the patients of their risks.
In our practice, we have seen injuries that have resulted from a variety of cosmetic procedures including, CoolSculpting, lasers, chemical peels, injections of Botox and injections of fillers, just to name a few.
Treating patients without an appropriate license is not only dangerous, it is illegal. If you have been injured after undergoing a cosmetic procedure in a medical spa, call us today to discuss your case with our experienced attorney at 855-554-6534.