Call for regulation of cosmetic doctors


A NEW organisation for cosmetic medical practitioners is calling for proper regulation of doctors in this field.

Dr Patrick Treacy, one of the founding members of the Irish Association of Cosmetic Doctors, said it had almost 20 members so far and intended to lobby for Government inspection and regulation of cosmetic services, restrictions on certain procedures and regulation of qualifications for cosmetic doctors.

Cosmetic doctors are unregulated in Ireland and one of the aims of the group is to reduce unwarranted and undesirable aspects of cosmetic medicine's reputation. The organisation said it was also seeking to ensure that administration of laser procedures, botulinum toxin and the use of some cosmetic fillers could be undertaken only by doctors.

Mr Treacy said he was not concerned about standards in cosmetic medicine which, he said, had improved in the past year. Plastic surgeons in hospitals already had a proper level of regulation and cosmetic doctors want to move forward on this, he claimed.

However, Mr Treacy's organisation has not been welcomed by everyone. The Irish Association of Plastic Surgeons is a professional representative body for plastic and reconstructive surgeons. "There is no need for yet another body of cosmetic surgery," said Mr Sean Carroll, consultant plastic surgeon at St Vincent's University Hospital and the Beacon Clinic. "My concern is an umbrella organisation could be utilised for legitimatisation of surgeons not trained in any speciality," he said.

Many of the doctors who want to join the association are in private practice and are part of the British Association of Cosmetic Doctors, according to Mr Treacy. The Irish body will have standards similar to its British counterpart and to become an associate member, practitioners must have two years' experience in the field.

The new group will be campaigning for regulation of qualifications in the field which Mr Treacy would like to see become part of conventional medicine.