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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote, and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, and community efforts.

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Tattoo Program

Florida Department of Health in Hardee County

Tattooing is defined as a mark or design made on or under the skin of a human being by a process of piercing and ingraining a pigment, dye, or ink in the skin. The tattoo industry is composed of professional artists that apply conventional and cosmetic tattoos.

Regulation of the tattoo industry will implement infection control standards to minimize the spread of bacterial and blood borne pathogen infections, i.e., hepatitis, HIV, and MRSA. These standards will require the use of barrier methods for reusable equipment; effective antiseptics for cleaning the client's skin; disinfectants for cleaning procedure surfaces; sterile single-use needles and grips; proper sterilization procedures; and prohibit needle and ink re-use.

Effective January 1, 2012, the Florida Department of Health implemented sections 381.00771-381.00791, Florida Statutes (F.S.), The Practice of Tattooing (link opens in new window). These statutes require licensure of tattoo artists and tattoo establishments, and they also set forth educational requirements and standards of practice for conventional and cosmetic tattoo artists as well as operational requirements for tattoo establishments. Chapter 64E-28, Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.) (PDF 58.3 KB, link opens in new window), which became effective September 5, 2012, details the statutory requirements for tattoo establishments and tattoo artists. It is recommended that tattoo establishment owners and operators as well as tattoo artists review the requirements of both the statute sections and the rule chapter to ensure compliance with requirements for both artists and establishments.

As of January 1, 2012, the conditions required by section 877.04, F.S., which required any person who tattooed in Florida to either be licensed as, or work under the "general supervision" of a Medical Doctor, a Doctor of Osteopathy, a Doctor of Dental Surgery, or a Doctor of Medical Dentistry, is no longer required due to implementation of sections 381.00771-381.00791, F.S.

Tattoo artists are required to attend industry specific training prior to applying for their license. A list of approved courses can be found at: Tattoo Educational Courses (link opens in new window)

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