The Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) has launched the new system of certification to safeguard the cosmetic surgery industry.
Surgeons will be listed on the RCS website and patients will be able to seek advice from certified surgeons who have appropriate training and experience in clearly defined areas of specialism.
It is an honour to be the first surgeon to have certified in cosmetic surgery through the RCS and I see this as a significant advance in patient care that will improve the reputation of the profession.
In order to certify through the RCS I have provided evidence of my training, experience, outcomes, provided reflection on difficult cases and showed through appraisal, revalidation, patient/colleague feedback that I meet the professional standards that would be expected of a cosmetic surgeon. I have been impressed at the robustness of the system and feel that every cosmetic surgeon should certify through the RCS. The importance of providing care throughout the patient journey, liasing with colleagues and the importance of communication and dissemination of information / education in an open and transparent manner allows surgeons to reflect, share and learn. It is clear that all surgeons that attended the Professional Masterclass in Cosmetic Surgery have the belief that cosmetic surgery can be regulated, professional standards raised and patients safeguarded form both physical and psychological harm.
The importance of the ethical aspects of practice and the doctor patient relationship have also been highlighted by he Nuffield Council on Bioethics report on bioethics. They have advised that further reforms in both surgical and non-surgical cosmetic interventions are necessary to protect patients and meet the high standards of care patients deserve. They have highlighted the need to extend regulation to help safeguard children from both physical and psychological harm and patients interests must be put at the forefront of any individual that offers cosmetic treatments.
I support Andrew Lansley’s cosmetic surgery bill that will enable the General Medical Council to note on its medical register which surgeons have been awarded the RCS’ cosmetic surgery certification.
I hope that patients will feel that these awards of certification will help and reassure them.