Just what the doctor ordered?
What are the ethics behind non-surgical cosmetic procedure s? Neil Sorby, Director of VISOG investigates.
Wrinkle relaxing injections and dermal fillers are big business- figures from a 2016 study in the USA showed that they are the first and second most performed non-surgical cosmetic procedure by number, and here in the UK, the numbers are catching up.
This has opened up a new income stream for unscrupulous traders providing their grey market supply and administration of what should be a prescription only medicine by beauty therapists and some nurses without the client ever seeing a presciber.
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) regularly wield their power by taking action against companies whose sites that use the names of Prescription medicines such as Botox a brand Botulinum toxin manufactured by Allergan, whose brand name has become as synonymous the vacuuming was with Hoover. There are strict laws on advertising or promoting prescription medicines to the general public. Whilst the mighty muscles of the regulator are often flexed in tracking down such uses of brand names in advertising, the regulation of the supply and administration seems to rely on the secondary response of slight twitching of much smaller muscles, driven by complaints, and reports from professional bodies or tabloid sting operations.
The law is clear- the person prescribing the Botulinum toxin should be a Doctor, independent Nurse prescriber, Dentist or Prescribing Pharmacist. Guidelines from the General Medical Council (GMC) states that they should meet you face to face: Skype doesn’t count.
The guidelines also state that the client should see the prescriber before every treatment. But this isn’t always happening.
A recent BBC Three documentary Ellie Undercover: The Botox Bust highlighted these concerns when Ellie Flynn, journalist posed as a client, speaking to various beauticians who all offered her Botox- some arranged for her to speak to a prescriber on the phone.
Some told Ellie that they were registered nurses, but no evidence was found when the Nursing register was checked.
There are laws and professional guidelines about prescribing and administering botulinum toxin or Botox. Doctors and prescribers who do not prescribe face to face risk being struck off.
At Visog Aesthetics we always ensure we comply with the law. Every client must have face to face consultation with one of our prescribing partners before each course of Botox treatments.
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