Regulating Aesthetic Medicine
In the news
A national registry on doctors and specialists in aesthetic medicine will be set up to curb allegations of disfigurements or deaths arising from aesthetic procedures performed by incompetent medical and non-medical practitioners.
Medical and surgical specialists will be required to possess a higher qualification and be properly trained in their respective fields before they can have their names included in the National Registry of Registered Medical Practitioners Practising Aesthetic Medical Practice.
These are among new provisions introduced by the Health Ministry in a move to regulate the industry following a significant increase in the number of doctors engaging in this practice.
Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the main objective of the registry was to ensure the safety of aesthetic medical practice in Malaysia.
“In recent years, aesthetic medical practice has gained popularity and as it is a consumer-driven service, the public needs to be protected.
“Aesthetic medical practice is not risk-free as many may perceive. In the pursuit of trying to satisfy the aesthetic desires of patients, practitioners need to be aware of the health risks and potential complications,” he said in the foreword of the just-released Guidelines on Aesthetic Medical Practice for Registered Medical Practitioners on Tuesday.
Aesthetic medicine procedures range from botox injections, hyaluronic acid injections (to treat knee pain caused by osteoarthritis), laser hair removal, micro-dermabrasion (anti-ageing treatment) and chemical peels (to improve and smooth the texture of the facial skin) to breast augmentation, liposuction, facelift and rhinoplasty.
Registries and Guidelines are a good start but pretty useless without accompanying legislation and enforcement. There are too many unqualified persons (including non-medical personnel) performing cosmetic procedures in this country, and complications (some horrendous and occasionally fatal) continue to occur. The latter can be reduced if procedures are conducted only by trained personnel and if people who conduct them are held accountable for what they do.
Vanity it seems is a highly profitable industry!
Doctors may want to follow the discussion thread in Dobbs
On a related note, I have updated the MMR’s Professional Societies Page with a link to the Malaysian Society of Aesthetic Medicine. They have a link to New guidelines on Aesthetic Medical Practice for Registered Medical Practitioners which is incorrect but we’ll update this post once we locate it.
Addendum: Here’s the correct link to Guidelines on Aesthetic Medical Practice from the MOH (PDF file)