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Ensure there is effective regulation of cosmetic interventions

Last updated: 12:27pm 16 May 2019

and ensure there is effective registration and regulation of those performing cosmetic interventions.

Conservative Party Manifesto 2017, p.68

Our verdict

In 2013, the government published the Review of the Regulation of Cosmetic Interventions, which found that:

  • a person having a non-surgical cosmetic intervention has no more protection and redress than someone buying a ballpoint pen or a toothbrush
  • dermal fillers are a crisis waiting to happen

Responding to the review, the government of the day rejected the proposal that “a new regulated profession is the only way of improving patient safety”, preferring to work with existing professional regulators instead.

This policy appears to acknowledge that problems persist with the registration and regulation of those performing cosmetic interventions and it promises to shore up the system.

Under this government, the Joint Council for Cosmetic Procedures (JCCP), which oversees voluntary regulation in the sector, has been accredited by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care.

The JCCP opened a voluntary practitioner register in April 2018, but changes were made to membership requirements after a threatened boycott by doctors and nurses.

The JCCP website acknowledges that “no legal statute exists in the United Kingdom to restrict the right of either Beauty Therapists or other persons to deliver [botox or dermal filler] treatments”.

The JCCP’s chair has said:

“We are arguing for statutory regulation. We cannot enforce these standards without that.”

This policy promises “effective registration and regulation”. Despite the establishment of a voluntary practitioner register, existing regulation in this area appears far from effective if the aim is to protect the public from unqualified persons carrying out potentially dangerous treatments.

We’re marking this as ‘not started’. To move it to ‘in progress’ we would expect to see the government initiate proposals for statutory regulation. Follow this policy for updates.

Ensure you’ve registered the details

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