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|Cosmetic Surgery Complaints|
Who do you turn to when you have a cosmetic surgery complaint?
Thousands of cosmetic procedures are carried out each year in the UK. When performed by a qualified plastic surgeon, and when the patient complies with all pre and post operation advice, the results are typically successful. However, as with all surgery, there is always some degree of risk associated with cosmetic surgery, which the surgeon will explain during your initial consultation.
But what should you do if, despite having realistic expectations of what the operation will achieve and having complied with all requirements, you are simply not satisfied with the results?
Complain to the surgery
If you feel that, for whatever reason, the procedure was not carried out correctly, you should contact your surgeon, or the hospital or clinic where the operation took place. In some instances, you will be able to obtain advice that will alleviate the problem (regarding the healing process, for example). If further surgery is required to remedy the situation, they should be able to arrange for a suitable procedure to take place.
“I panicked after my abdominoplasty, as things did not look or feel right,” said one patient. “I contacted my surgery and they told me to come in for an examination. They detected some infection which was easily treated, and now everything is fine.”
Complain to the Healthcare Commission
If you feel that your concerns have not been taken seriously by the surgeon, hospital or clinic, you can take your complaint to a higher level. The Healthcare Commission is responsible for regulating and inspecting the private and voluntary healthcare sector in England. All establishments involved in providing cosmetic procedures, including laser/IPL/LHE treatments, come under Healthcare Commission regulation. If there has been a breach of Healthcare Commission standards, action can be taken against the establishment that carried out the procedure. Please be aware, however, that the Healthcare Commission is concerned with the conduct of the practitioner and medical establishment and cannot, therefore, answer concerns about fees etc.
To contact the Healthcare Commission regarding a complaint, you should telephone 0845 6013012 or write to:
The Healthcare Commission
Complain to the Independent Sector Complaints Adjudication Service
The Independent Healthcare Advisory Service has been asked by the Government to work on a self regulatory model for cosmetic treatments which will include botulinum toxin and dermal fillers. The self regulatory model will be finalised in 2008 and will include:
• A set of Standards and a Code of Practice
You can make a complaint to the Independent Sector Complaints Adjudication Service if your healthcare provider is a member of this scheme. You can telephone the Adjudication Service on 020 7379 8598 or write to:
The Independent Sector Complaints Adjudication Service
Complain about a doctor, nurse or dentist
To complain about the actions of a specific doctor, you can contact the General Medical Council. You can telephone them on 0845 357 0022, or write to:
The General Medical Council
To complain about the actions of a specific nurse, you should contact the Nursing and Midwifery Council. You can telephone them on 020 7437 7181, or write to:
The Nursing and Midwifery Council
To complain about the actions of a specific dentist, contact the General Dental Council. You can telephone them on 020 7887 3800, or write to:
The Professional Standards Directorate
Complain about a medical product
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is an executive agency of the Department of Health and is responsible for ensuring that medicines and medical devices work and are acceptably safe. In fulfilling this role, the MHRA regulates a wide range of materials, from medicines and medical devices to blood and therapeutic products/services that are derived from tissue engineering.
So, if you wish to report a problem with a product, such as a breast implant, for example, you can telephone the MHRA on 020 7084 2000 or write to:
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency
Alternatively, you can visit their website, www.mhra.gov.uk, and complete an online form.
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