Gov. Dannel P. Malloy on Friday vetoed a bill that would have established new rules for medical spas, saying he supports the spirit of the legislation but questioned the impact it could have on small businesses.
Senate Bill 1067 would have required med spas to employ, or contract with, a physician to serve as a medical director and perform an assessment of anyone undergoing a procedure at the facilities. It also would have required the physicians to perform or supervise the procedure itself.
Med spas are a growing sector of the health and beauty market. Under Connecticut law, such facilities provide cosmetic medical procedures designed to improve appearance, not treat diseases. Examples of the services provided at med spas include laser hair removal, laser treatment of leg veins and hair transplants.
Supporters of the bill, which cleared the House and Senate in the last few days of the 2013 legislative session, say it would add a measure of oversight to the booming med spa business.
“We have become increasingly concerned about the proliferation of non-physicians practicing medicine and its impact on patient safety,” Philip Kerr, Dirk Elson and Timothy C. Flynn wrote in a letter to lawmakers earlier this year. The three physicians all backed the bill.
In his veto message, Malloy said he “strongly supports the objectives of the bill.” But he said the bill’s requirements “may unnecessarily limit” the work of Advanced Practice Registered Nurses, who currently oversee many of the cosmetic procedures offered by med spas.
Malloy also said the measure could have placed an undue burden on small businesses, which many med spas are.
The governor said requirements as demanding as those proposed by the bill should only come after the state Department of Public Health, a professional board or a working group has conducted a thorough review.