Rating System For Cosmetic Surgery Sector For Greater Patient Transparency
Cosmetic surgery experts at Irwin Mitchell welcome the new step for cosmetic surgery clinics to be named and shamed that fail to provide good quality treatment.
For the first time under government plans, clinics offering cosmetic surgery procedures are to be rated online, which health secretary Jeremy Hunt says would help ‘end the lottery of poor practice.’
An eight-week consultation launches today by the Department of Health who want to expand the ratings programme currently run by health regulator, Care Quality Commission (CQC), which already applies to NHS services such as hospitals and GP surgeries.
Potential patients will be given a simple guide to the quality of clinics in their area with a clear rating system that will incorporate up to 100 clinics. It will include four ratings; outstanding, good, requires improvement, or inadequate.
After the PIP breast implant scandal in 2012, which led to the Keogh Review, the government has been trying to create an initiative to ensure safer cosmetic surgery.
The consultation will also discuss rating up to 1,000 providers of procedures and services including refractive eye surgery, independent community health providers, ambulance services and dialysis units.
Termination of pregnancy services may also be included in the rating system following the announcement that Marie Stopes International suspended abortions for all under 18s and vulnerable groups of women after surprise inspections by the CQC.
Douglas McGeorge, consultant plastic surgeon and former president of the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) warned users to still be ‘extremely vigilant’ because the CQC’s remit will involve inspecting a practice’s equipment and administrative areas, rather than individual surgeons.
Mandy Luckman, medical negligence expert specialising in cosmetic surgery cases, said:
Expert Opinion“We have seen the long-term effects on patients that have experienced poor outcomes following cosmetic procedures and improving patient safety to minimise such outcomes is long overdue.
“Although people in the cosmetic industry have been calling for closer government scrutiny over the past decade, we welcome this step which will hopefully go some way to informing patient choice by improving transparency.
“There have been examples of really poor practice in the cosmetic sector over the past few years; therefore it’s promising to see cosmetic clinic ratings to coincide with current systems for NHS practices. It shows that the government is acting on promoting safe practices in this sector and that patient care is just as important for cosmetic procedures as it is for non-cosmetic procedures. ”
Mandy Luckman - Partner
If you have been affected by negligent cosmetic surgery you might be entitled to claim compensation. See our Cosmetic Surgery Compensation page for more information.