Improved regulation and better education needed around those performing cosmetic surgeries and procedures

7 June 2016
Allowing unregistered and unqualified people to perform invasive cosmetic procedures on you in an unsterile environment is not worth the risk, according to Maurice Blackburn Principal Dimitra Dubrow.

Ms Dubrow, the firm’s Victorian head of medical negligence, described as “incredibly disturbing” and “very dangerous” news that such procedures were being performed at a Docklands apartment before the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) searched the property and seized evidence earlier this week.

“There are real threats to patient safety when undergoing any type of surgery, so for people to be conducting these types of highly specialised and invasive treatments in an apartment is appalling,” Ms Dubrow said.

“Even if you are undergoing a beauty procedure, these sorts of treatments should only ever be performed in a clean and sterile environment. They certainly should not be performed in the bedroom of an apartment where people are living or where there are animals wandering around.

“At Maurice Blackburn, we see a lot of bad outcomes of cosmetic surgeries and other procedures gone wrong, and in nearly every case, the patient should have got better information prior to the procedure.”

She said the case highlighted that “there clearly needs to be much better regulations if these sorts of clinics can pop up in residential apartment buildings, and there also needs to be much better education about the associated risks of what and where such procedures should be performed.

“Importantly, those performing such procedures also need to be held accountable when things go wrong, and for that reason, we believe people should have easier access to compensation for pain and suffering from botched procedures,” Ms Dubrow said.

“We have long been arguing about the importance of the broader issue of the law not protecting people who have had these procedures and they have gone wrong, because the thresholds are excessively high for people having to prove permanent and significant injury.

“My recommendation for anyone considering any type of cosmetic procedure is do your homework on the clinic and the practitioners you are letting perform any sort of procedure on any part of your body. Ask what their qualifications are and check that there are no restrictions on their ability to practice. The consequences can be life-altering, so it’s just not worth the risks.”

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