CONFERENCE REPORT: BCAM Conference, London

06 Oct 2015

The British College of Aesthetic Medicine (BCAM) invited practitioners to its annual conference at the Church House Conference Centre in Westminster on September 26. 

The day comprised both a clinical and business agenda, which each featured an array of engaging presentations and live demonstrations that were well received by their audiences. 

Conference director Dr Beatriz Molina said, “Attendance was strong with 250 delegates eager to hear from a range of high-quality speakers, both from within the aesthetic practitioners sector and the wider business community, offering advice and insight on how to run a successful and ethical business.” 

Following a warm welcome from Dr Molina, Dr Ravi Jain took to the podium to discuss the psychological impact of undergoing VASER treatment. During his presentation Dr Jain explained that many men are now seeking private treatment for gynaecomastia, a condition that, he noted, has a significant impact on men’s psychological wellbeing. Dr Jain advised delegates to always take patient concerns seriously and, if they are unable to offer appropriate treatment, they should refer patients on to colleagues who are able to help. 

The morning clinical sessions continued with presentations on liposuction and fat grating, lipolysis, and hair transplantation, while the business agenda featured talks on revalidation and appraisal, as well as stress management techniques for practitioners and patients. 

Gary Conroy, co-founder of 5 Squirrels, a company that supports aesthetic practitioners develop their own brand skincare, spoke on the value of building a brand for your clinic; advising practitioners on how to create a unique selling point that will make their clinic stand out amongst the competition. 

Journalist and media consultant Fiona Scott then shared advice on speaking to the press, arguing that achieving editorial coverage in the media can sometimes be more valuable than advertising in the media. She also advised practitioners on the importance of building relationships with local journalists, suggesting that getting your stories covered in the regional press can be more beneficial than achieving national coverage. 

In the clinical sessions, meanwhile, consultant plastic surgeon Mr Rajiv Grover educated delegates with his presentation on pausing facial ageing. Mr Grover highlighted how dermal fillers, toxins and surgery can pause the long-term ageing process if used correctly, while also advising practitioners on how to effectively sell these treatments to prospective patients.

Dr Samantha Gammell and Dr Jacques Otto then presented on intravenous (IV) nutritional therapy, highlighting the marketing challenges they have faced when launching their new brand. Dr Gammell noted that despite IV nutritional therapy being classified as a medicine in the US and most European countries, in the UK the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has, after much deliberation, now confirmed that IV nutrition therapy is not regarded as a medicine in the UK, and is therefore not subject to MHRA regulation. 

The afternoon also featured a demonstration of Dr Molina’s 3-point facelift, Dr John Quinn’s lower-face treatment, a discussion of medical legal risks with Dr Philip Dobson and advice on understanding patient communication from Dr Kathleen Long. 

The day concluded with a live demonstration of PDO vs. Silhouette Soft thread lift techniques, in which Dr Otto and Dr Kuldeep Minocha treated one side of a patient’s mid-face in order to compare the results that can be achieved. The session was chaired by Dr Ian Strawford, who has experience of using both techniques so was well-placed to advise the audience on the benefits and potential side effects of each thread treatment. Both patients treated reported feeling no pain throughout the procedures and were pleased with the results. 

Aesthetic practitioner and BCAM delegate Dr Nestor Demosthenous made the trip from his clinic in Glasgow and said, “It’s been an absolutely fantastic day. It’s great to come down to London and meet with friends and colleagues; there are lots of great companies here and the speakers have been second-to-none. The conference has offered a lot of education and networking opportunities, as well as the socialising opportunities in the evening!”

Dr Molina concluded, “I truly believe we have raised – and will continue to – raise the bar at the annual BCAM conference, given we now have access to such a range of engaging and knowledgeable speakers and a fantastic venue. I am already working on next year’s conference at the Church House Conference Centre, which will take place on Saturday September 24, 2016.” 

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