Too many people undergoing cosmetic surgery are treated by untrained staff and left in danger while sedated during liposuction according to a report out by the regulator the Care Quality Commission.

The Commission inspected 65 services that provide solely cosmetic surgery and/or hair transplant surgery, representing just under two thirds of those currently registered.

Inspectors found staff without the appropriate training, qualifications and competencies to carry out their role, and unsafe practice in the use of sedation and anaesthetics

They also found poor monitoring and management of patients whose condition might deteriorate and a lack of attention to fundamental safety processes

There was a general failure to ensure consent is obtained in a two-stage process, with an appropriate cooling off period between initial consultation and surgery, infection prevention and control standards not always being followed and found concerns about equipment maintenance.

Professor Ted Baker, CQC’s Chief Inspector of Hospitals has written to all independent cosmetic surgery providers.

His letter highlights these emerging concerns and clarifies the standards of patient care that CQC expect and patients deserve. It also reminds providers of their responsibility to deliver safe and effective services.

Professor Ted Baker, CQC’s Chief Inspector of Hospitals, said:

“Patients should be able to expect safe, high quality care from all providers of cosmetic surgery. Staff must be appropriately trained and supported to carry out their role, effective processes should be in place to monitor patients during and after procedures and emergency equipment on hand to ensure patient safety.

“We know there are some independent cosmetic surgery providers doing all these things and providing a very good standard of care. Unfortunately, our initial inspections suggest that this is not always the case.

“Where we have found concerns we have held those providers to account and have been clear where improvements must be made. We expect providers to deliver on their commitment to provide safe, high-quality care. And we will do everything within our powers to ensure this happens.

“I urge everyone who is considering cosmetic surgery to read our reports before deciding which provider to consult.”


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