The Massage Program regulates businesses operating massage establishments in San Francisco to ensure that they maintain a safe and sanitary environment. Businesses that employ only practitioners certified by the California Massage Therapy Council are exempt from local permit requirements.
Employees of establishments and/or solo practitioners must be also be licensed by the Program as massage practitioners unless they are certified by the California Massage Therapy Council.
Principal Activities and Services
- Permit and regulate massage establishments.
- License massage practitioners that are not certified by the California Massage Therapy Council.
- Conduct annual inspections of massage establishments.
- Respond to citizen complaints regarding unsanitary conditions.
- Review and approve plans for new construction or major remodeling.
Permits and Practitioner Licenses
Establishments who employ only state certified practitioners are exempt from permit requirements. Operators of exempt establishments must fill out the Declaration of Exemption from Massage Permit Requirements Form and provide copies of the state certification for all practitioners. State certified massage practitioners are exempt from San Francisco practitioner license requirements.
Obtaining a Massage Practitioner License
Massage practitioners, except state certified practitioners and licensed healthcare practitioners, are required to obtain a permit from the Department of Public Health. Home-based massage practitioners must obtain a practitioner permit. Click on the type of permit(s) that you need and follow the instructions.
General and Advanced massage practitioner
Obtaining a Massage Establishment Permit
Massage establishments, except massage establishments which employ or use only state certified practitioners or non-profit organizations, are required to obtain a license from the Department of Public Health. If your establishment does not meet exemption qualifications, click on the type of permit(s) that you need, and follow the instructions.
General massage establishment
Solo practitioner massage establishment
Outcall massage service
Making a Complaint
If you would like to make a complaint regarding a massage establishment, click here.
Planning Department - Contact for more information if you wish to make a complaint regarding a home-based massage establishment. Call (415) 588-6377.
California Massage Therapy Council