Following the publication of the Keogh report in 2013, today saw the announcement of suggested new standards for the cosmetic surgery industry that would make training mandatory for those practitioners administering injectables such as Botox and dermal fillers.
Seen by many Cosmetic Surgeons and Doctors as a recommendation that in reality will do little to protect patients and provide the regulation the industry desperately wants, this fast-growing sector is seemingly still struggling to find a way to ensure patients are protected from the “cosmetic cowboys” that exploit the current lack of regulation.
Having worked with a number of cosmetic surgeons and specialist clinics I have seen first-hand how many in this industry self-regulate and set their own high standards for the administering of injectables and other cosmetic procedures. All of the clinics I have worked with have demonstrated a real commitment to giving their patients the best possible care and treatment, delivered by practitioners with the right training and right qualifications. And this is how it should be.
The fact that there are some individuals out there that administer injectables such as Botox and dermal fillers without any training is appalling and it is a real shame that these latest recommendations haven’t done more to address this. Making training mandatory is a step in the right direction, however, surgeons such as Rajiv Grover, who is also president of the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) wants a more definite solution. He, along with others in the industry were hoping that Dermal Fillers would have been classified as prescription only, resulting immediately in tighter legislation, offering protection for consumers. There is real frustration that the opportunity to make a real stand has been missed.
As a PR who has worked in this industry for several years, I feel our role is to use the platform we have to educate the consumer. The more we can do to share the right information, realities behind cosmetic procedures and advice from qualified, medical experts then the better informed the public will be. Consumers need to understand what they should consider before undergoing any cosmetic procedure and if regulations aren’t in place to enforce this, then those of us that work in the media need to use the access we have to share as much information and advice as we can.