BAAPS condemns plastic surgery auctioning

21 Feb 2018

The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) has released a statement which condemns the recent auctioning of cosmetic surgery as a prize at an annual dinner on January 18.

The professional body states that the private clinic in question, has ‘blatantly disregarded General Medical Council (GMC) guidelines to offer cosmetic surgery as an auction prize’. 

GMC guidance for doctors who offer cosmetic interventions states that services must not be offered as a prize, and that when communicating information about cosmetic procedures, promotional tactics must not encourage ill-considered decisions, or knowingly allow others to misrepresent or offer treatment in ways that would conflict with this guidance. 

The BAAPS Council issues the following statement, “Offering plastic surgery as a prize is clearly against GMC guidance and, in this case, is both transgressing the guidance for good patient care and bringing the speciality into disrepute in a very public manner. The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons has a responsibility for standards of all within the speciality and we certainly stand up for patient welfare.

“Neither surgical or non-surgical treatments are without risk or 100% guaranteed, and so any decision to undergo treatment should be fully considered – a process which is disrupted by offering surgery as a competition prize. Any patient making irreversible decisions in circumstances of hype, excitement and emotion, are putting themselves at very great risk.

“By commodifying cosmetic surgery and non-surgical treatment, clinics continue to trivialise the risks and glorify the benefits of procedures. The lack of respect for well-known guidelines demonstrate an unconscionable willingness to pressure potentially vulnerable people into risky, irreversible treatments, and the Association would urge patients to remain vigilant against individuals using those kinds of tactics.

“This is unethical and irresponsible advertising practice which therefore contravenes the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) guidelines too. BAAPS has always been a professional body to uphold standards in all aspects of surgery. The Nuffield Bioethics report on cosmetic procedures specifically highlighted how the ASA and CAP should be more proactive.” 

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