BAPRAS welcomes interim report of the Review for Cosmetic Interventions

Media Release- 31 December 2012

The British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS), which represents Plastic Surgeons on behalf of the Royal Colleges and leads plastic surgery training, welcomes the Department of Health interim report of the Review of Regulations for Cosmetic Interventions and reiterates the importance of taking action to protect patients who could be at risk from bad practice.

BAPRAS President Graeme Perks said:  “A little over a year on from the PIP Breast Implant crisis, this report is a timely reminder of the important opportunity the Department of Health has to put effective controls for cosmetic interventions in place.  With responses from a wide range of organisations and individuals, there appears to be overwhelming consensus that new regulation is required to ensure patients are provided with consistent information and advice, safety and quality, and transparency and accountability.

“As we have been saying for a while, it is critical that cosmetic surgery procedures are undertaken by fully qualified surgeons who go through a proper consultation period with patients.  Any form of surgery has the possibility of unexpected adverse events and unpredictable outcomes, and must therefore be performed by qualified surgeons with valid certification, and with training in good judgement and probity to advise patients correctly. Surgery must also be done in a safe clinical environment with well organised and effective aftercare.  For patients to really be protected from bad practice, we believe that the title ‘surgeon’ must be protected and have suggested this as part of the review’s call for evidence.

"We need to stop the unprofessional ‘rush to the bottom’ in pursuit of gain as was exemplified by the use of the cheapest (PIP) implants available. As an Association we expect all our members to adhere to our high standards, as outlined in BAPRAS’s  new Code of Practice published last Autumn, and would encourage the Department of Health to use this as a benchmark of best practice.

“While 2012 was a year of questions for cosmetic surgery, 2013 needs to provide the answers.  Examples of bad practice continue to exist, putting individuals at risk and devaluing the benefits that good surgery will provide.  We look forward to continuing to work with Sir Bruce Keogh and his committee to ensure every patient has a deservedly high level of care.”