BAPRAS comments on cosmetic surgery incentive

Media statement- 28 April 2009

Hamish Laing, consultant plastic surgeon and member of the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS) said:

“Cosmetic surgery and cosmetic treatments can be very successful if they are appropriate for the person who seeks them and are carried out to the highest standards. With regard to surgical procedures it is essential that the patient is fully aware of the risks and benefits of the surgery and has a realistic expectation of what can be achieved. A person should feel able to change their mind before surgery is carried out without feeling under any pressure from the surgeon or clinic or any other organisation to go ahead. Giving vouchers that could be exchanged for an operation isn’t an appropriate way for patients to be selected to undergo plastic surgery the outcome of which is permanent and could make the person feel that they have to commit to undergo treatment having accepted the vouchers.

“Anyone considering plastic surgery should have at least one consultation with the surgeon who would carry it out to establish his or her credentials and that of the hospital where the procedure will take place before committing to anything. They should check that the surgeon is registered with the general medical council (GMC), and is on an appropriate specialist register (such as the plastic surgery register at the GMC).  Plastic surgeons work under strict guidelines and regulations and it is their responsibility to weigh up pros and cons for each individual person in a responsible and focused manner, directed towards the best interests of their patient.  People should be given information not inducements when considering cosmetic surgery.”


About cosmetic surgery
Cosmetic surgery means operations that revise or change appearance, colour, texture, structural position of body features to achieve what patients perceive to be more desirable. 


BAPRAS, the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery, is the voice of plastic surgery in the UK. It aims to increase the understanding of the professional specialty and scope of plastic surgery, promoting innovation in teaching, learning and research.

Founded in 1946 (originally as the British Association of Plastic Surgeons), today BAPRAS has over 800 members and is the professional representative body for reconstructive and aesthetic plastic surgeons providing services to patients on the NHS and privately in the UK.

Members of the public can find a member plastic surgeon in their area by logging on to Anyone can check the GMC to find out if a surgeon is on the plastic surgery specialist register.