A tremendous increase in cosmetic-related complications has led to renewed pressure for increased regulation in a sector that experts have infiltrated by dodgy operators who benefited from Australia's $ 1 billion obsession with beauty ,
An article appeared this week The Journal of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery found that nearly 200 people worldwide are blind after receiving dermal fillers last year.
This figure represents an increase of 94% over the previous year, triggering warnings from physicians who regulate themselves in the industry has failed to keep up with the rise in popularity of cosmetic procedures with fuller lips and smoother skin.
"The trend in Australia and worldwide is, in my opinion, a very large, almost exponential increase in these interventions. The president of the Australasian College of Cosmetic Surgery, Dr. Irene Kushelew, told Guardian Australia.
"And because of this explosion in interest in these procedures has led to an explosion of the number of clinics that provide these services set up and offer.
"In fact, some of these clinics are not really well-equipped, the people who work in them are often unable to meet the training standards they should, and it's often very difficult for patients to tell the difference.
Health authorities have repeatedly warned of an increase in under-performing practitioners using illegally imported substances in unregulated environments. In 2018, Four Corners revealed that an Australian woman was permanently blind after a nurse in a clinic where no doctor was present had injected dermal fillers into her face.
The year before, the Health Care Complaints Commission banned Pu Liu (also known as Mabel Liu) after performing cosmetic or surgical procedures for at least three years after an investigation by the Sydney Morning Herald revealed that the unregistered practitioner Had intervened via WeChat from their apartment in the Five Dock.
At the heart of industry insiders say that there is a lack of regulation, who can call himself a cosmetic surgeon.
"The term cosmetic surgeon is unregulated, and that means any medical professional, regardless of his or her training experience or qualification, can call himself a cosmetic surgeon," said associate professor Gazi Hussain, president of the Australian Plastic Surgeons Association.
"So you can be someone who has just graduated from medical school without a major education in surgery, and you can hang a sign that says you're a cosmetic surgeon." You may be a cardiac surgeon who has spent your career looking after people with a heart attack and then calling you a cosmetic surgeon the next day.
Hussain said, the major, the term surgeon himself is not protected, which means that "the majority of people who call themselves cosmetic surgeons are not trained in surgery.
A general practitioner "might have completed a weekend course in some kind of cosmetic surgery and then started this surgery," Hussain said.
In 2017 Following the death of Jean Huang following a breast augmentation surgery by a visiting Chinese surgeon, the Government of New South Wales launched an investigation into complaints in the field of cosmetic health care.
In the findings released last year, the government's investigation recommended that the Health Council of Coag protect or restrict the duration at national level.
Coag published a consultation paper late last year and is expected to consider whether further legislative changes are needed during the course of 2019.
The NSW investigation also raised concern over the so-called proliferation of "commercial operators who make profits to patients". According to industry estimates, the value of the Australian cosmetics industry is around $ 1 billion, 40% more per capita than in the United States.
Dr. Michael Molton of Cosmetic Physicians College, Australasia, stated that there is a "fundamental difference" between "commercial" and "medical" operators.
Molton said the study said that when a person is a customer, not a patient "You will sell to that person everything you can, whether they need it or not, regardless of other circumstances.
Hussain also acknowledged the problem by stating that the ASPS wanted to establish "ethical guidelines" for social media and other advertising.
There was a genuine commercialization of the whole area in the media and a commercialization of patients. "
"We are aware of this and want to be part of the solution, but if we argue to our members that we will stick to a higher standard, we expect supervisors to ensure that other practitioners have a higher standard Standard. "