Cosmetics

Health written question – answered on 8th September 2014.

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Photo of Karen Lumley Karen Lumley Conservative, Redditch

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of regulation of the cosmetic industry; and whether he plans to propose further regulations relating to that industry.

Photo of Daniel Poulter Daniel Poulter The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

On 24 April 2013, the independent ‘Review of the Regulation of Cosmetic Interventions’, chaired by Sir Bruce Keogh, was published. A copy has already been placed in the Library.

The review highlighted how the rapid growth of the cosmetic interventions sector is exposing people who undergo these procedures to a concerning lack of safeguards. It made recommendations to improve the quality of care, to inform and empower the public and to ensure resolution and redress when things go wrong.

We fully accept the principles of the Keogh review and the overwhelming majority of the recommendations. The ‘Government Response to the Review of the Regulation of Cosmetic Interventions’, was published on 13 February. The response looks to strengthen standards through better training and robust qualifications, and explores how far supervision from regulated professionals might support self-regulation of the sector. A copy of the response has already been placed in the Library.

We want to protect the public and ensure proper training and oversight of both non-surgical and surgical cosmetic interventions and we are looking at ways to legislate where required to achieve this. Officials are working with key delivery partners such as the Royal College of Surgeons who have set up an inter-specialty committee to ensure standards for cosmetic surgery and they are working with the General Medical Council on a code of ethical conduct. Health Education England (HEE) is leading on a review of training for providers of non-surgical interventions, such as botulinum toxin (commonly known as 'Botox') and dermal filler injections. HEE will be publishing their findings on the training framework soon. Work is also under way on a breast implant registry to reassure women that if problems arise they can be contacted, kept informed and called in for treatment if necessary.

There are examples of high quality surgical and non-surgical cosmetic interventions provided by trained staff to high standards of care and satisfaction. It is these high standards that must be universal.

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