Review seeks to eradicate malpractice in cosmetic surgery
15 August 2012
A review is to be carried out into the cosmetic surgery industry which will seek to stamp out ‘grubby practices’ within it.
Following the PIP breast implant scandal, Sir Bruce Keogh, Medical Director of the NHS, will use the review to determine whether tighter regulation is needed.
He is inviting people to share their views of the industry and give suggestions on how it could be improved.
The PIP implant scandal, which is believed to affect almost 50,000 women in the UK, raised serious concerns about how the cosmetic surgery industry operates. Thousands of women were fitted with the industrial silicone-filled implants despite prior warnings from surgeons.
Around 7,000 women are having checks for the implants as many clinics did keep records of which patients had them installed.
"The recent problems with PIP breast implants have shone a light on the cosmetic surgery industry," said Professor Keogh.
"Many questions have been raised, particularly around the regulation of clinics, whether all practitioners are adequately qualified, how well people are advised when money is changing hands, aggressive marketing techniques, and what protection is available when things go wrong.
"I am concerned that too many people do not realise how serious cosmetic surgery is and do not consider the life-long implications – and potential complications – it can have."
There are also concerns that people put price before safety when considering having cosmetic surgery. A survey of 1,762 released by the Department of Health revealed that while two thirds of respondents would factor in the cost, only half said they would take the qualifications of the doctor into consideration, and furthermore, less than half would consider the quality of the aftercare.
The review is set to deal with a range of issues, through from qualifications of those carrying out procedures and ensuring people receive adequate information about the surgery they are to undergo, to how complaints are handled.