The pandemic has been challenging for us all. Even now, as things begin to slowly open up again, we find ourselves missing those carefree days when no one batted an eye at your typical group gathering: dinners, birthdays, holiday get-togethers, quinceañeras, Monday Night Football with the neighbors, and the parties – oh yes, the parties. Those special times when all of our close friends would come over while a medical professional injected everyone with Botox. Oh, wait. That’s not your average party. That’s a “Botox party.”
And what is a Botox party? Also known as Botox filler parties, a Botox party is when patients gather together to receive Botox treatment in someone’s house. There are many reasons to prefer this kind of setting: the privacy of the home, group support, and simply because it’s easier for anyone with a busy schedule. No matter what the reason, Botox parties are a great option for physicians and medical professionals who want to meet growing demand. But before you start offering this service, first you need to know whether they are allowed in your state.
Botox laws, by state, can differ greatly. In Nevada, for example, the legislature passed a law in 2017 that expressly prohibited Botox injections performed anywhere other than a medical facility, a medical aesthetic practice, or a medical spa. In California, the opposite is true. The California Medical Board has issued guidance stating that California law does not restrict where Botox treatments are performed.
Beyond California and Nevada, many states have no explicit position on Botox parties. But this doesn’t mean they’re not allowed. While many states don’t regulate where Botox injections can occur, they also don’t forbid them from taking place outside of a medical practice. In states such as New York and Texas, for example, there are currently no specific guidelines regulating when or where Botox may be administered. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any legal requirements for you to meet either.
Wherever there is no explicit legal or regulatory guidance on the issue, Botox parties are generally acceptable as long as they meet a certain threshold of compliance. The requirements for a compliant Botox party include: providing a good-faith medical exam, maintaining the appropriate supervision and delegation of authority as well as scope of practice, properly transporting all prescription drugs, and lastly, ensuring the necessary conditions for patient privacy. We’ll go into more detail for each of these below.
The Good Faith Exam
In every state, cosmetic procedures fall under the practice of medicine. Since this is the case, only a medical professional can determine whether a patient is a good candidate for Botox before it can be administered. Physicians should ensure, to the best of their abilities, that medical procedures are safe and can achieve desired outcomes. Nobody wants to have a botched Botox party. And so physicians must provide a good-faith exam before administering Botox.
In most states, either a licensed physician, a PA, or an NP may perform the exam. As long as they follow the state’s appropriate supervision and delegation laws. Next, a course of treatment – in this case, a Botox injection – can be prescribed by either the physician, PA, or NP. And if so desired, the treatment’s administration may be delegated to other qualified, non-physician providers.
Supervision, Delegation, and Scope of Practice
So who can attend the Botox party? Before heading off, make sure your squad is ready. And we’re not talking about a team of partygoers. We mean a group of legally qualified professionals with the ability to both prescribe and inject Botox within their scope of practice.
In most states, there are strict rules regulating the delegation of duties and responsibilities for nonsurgical cosmetic procedures. So every physician should know what’s allowed and what isn’t before showing up. As mentioned above, prescriptive authority can often be delegated to either a PA or an NP, as long as the agreement abides by the state’s delegation and supervision laws.
Speaking of supervision, each state also has its own rules for a physician overseeing nonsurgical cosmetic procedures. Some states require close supervision; others, far less. When it comes to Botox parties, the prescribing physician may be required to be on-site or at least to be made immediately available in the event of a medical emergency.
As long as you follow these rules closely, the treatment can be administered by a PA, NP, and even RNs – if they have the requisite certificate and training to administer Botox injections. But be careful when it comes to LVNs. LVNs are not allowed to practice independently and must practice under the delegation of a higher medical license. While some states may allow an LVN to administer Botox (under the supervision of a physician, PA, NP, or RN), this is only if the LVN has obtained a Botox certification and follows all other standards of care prescribed by the state. Once again, it pays for physicians to look into their local laws before proceeding.
One of the primary lures of a Botox party is the ability to bring the party home! But this feature also brings added responsibility – at least for medical professionals.
When it comes to transporting Botox, there are several legal requirements to be met. Since Botox is a prescription drug, you must handle its transport with due care. No different from how you would handle drugs in any medical office, Botox must be safeguarded. In the course of travel, all injectables should be safely stored and maintained in their original packaging until duly prescribed to an individual. In addition, in some states, a traveling cosmetic procedure service could require a separate license for the vehicle.
There are also practical considerations when it comes to transporting Botox. For example, it’s recommended to keep the injectable in a refrigerator that ranges from 5° C to 8° C, or in the freezer, below 5° C. This is also an essential part of handling your injectables with care. You must safely and securely transport Botox to the party before you can prescribe and administer it.
Finally, patient privacy must be taken into account. It doesn’t matter if the medical procedure happens at a party – HIPAA follows everywhere protected health information goes. Under Federal law, HIPAA requires patient consent before releasing any personal health information (PHI) for any reason other than treatment, payment, or health care operations.
Since Botox parties happen in an environment where this type of information is more difficult to control, physicians must take special care not to violate the law. In any practice, whether it’s maintained in the medical office or on the road, it’s necessary to have patient authorization forms to help identify situations where a patient’s PHI would need to be disclosed.
Another safeguard, especially for Botox filler parties, is the patient consent form. HIPAA does not explicitly require patient consent forms, but they can help specify how, when, and where a patient agrees to allow their PHI to be used for routine purposes by the injector. The consent form will provide a supplemental level of protection for the Botox injector in the event patient privacy issues arise.
These forms are a crucial part of setting up a safe and compliant Botox party for both physicians and medical professionals. They will also help you market the parties themselves.
Know the Law
It’s no wonder Botox parties are becoming more popular in America – they’re convenient, easy, and a good time. As a physician, offering Botox parties is an innovative way to grow your brand. But before you get started, remember to follow the rules and regulations of your state as they would apply to any standard medical spa setting. And following those rules means knowing about them in the first place.
If you have questions about how to legally and compliantly perform a Botox filler party in your state, or for more information in general about legal compliance and medical practice, schedule a consultation with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.