New COVID-19 rules cause industry confusion about reopening

04 Jul 2020

New coronavirus lockdown rules published by Public Health England on Friday afternoon state that providers of cosmetic, aesthetic and wellness treatments are not permitted to reopen until further notice.

According to Schedule 2 of The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (No. 2) (England) Regulations 2020, businesses subject to closure include spas and beauty salons. It clarified that ‘beauty salon’ includes any premises providing beauty services including ‘cosmetic, aesthetic and wellness treatments’.

Although the new regulations explicitly mention ‘aesthetic’ and ‘cosmetic’ treatments, there is still much confusion within the profession in regards to whether ‘medical’ aesthetic or cosmetic treatments can be performed at a clinic.

The industry associations are currently working through the weekend to seek clarity on this matter and the British Association of Cosmetic Nurses has confirmed it is pursuing legal advice.

Chair of the JCCP, Professor David Sines, said, “The JCCP is aware that some confusion and concern has arisen in the sector following the Government’s latest update. The JCCP can affirm that at this time, its recent opinion and guidance ‘Update for practitioners on part 1 of the JCCP register, who propose to resume practice from July 4th’, remains in place and unchanged.”

Professor Sines said that the JCCP is of the continued opinion that you can practise if you:

  • Are acting in your capacity as a regulated healthcare professional
  • Place patient safety and public protection as your primary concern
  • Perform an individual patient assessment and associated risk assessment which leads to a clinical determination (arrived at through the application of the practitioner’s clinical judgement) that confirms that the rationale for the provision of the procedure is medically related
  • Undertake the treatment from clinical rather than beauty premises
  • Undertake the procedure in accordance with published JCCP guidance and ensure that appropriate patient safety precautions are in place
  • Ensure that you are insured for the procedure that you intend to perform

Professor Sines added, “In these circumstances, the JCCP would not consider these services to be elective or aesthetic ‘beauty-related services’ and will support its members in their decision to open from July 4 for the performance of medically-related aesthetic treatments. This decision also accords with the advice received from professional statutory regulators.”

Note that this statement from the JCCP is due to be formally released on Monday and is subject to change. 

Director of practitioner register Save Face, Ashton Collins told Aesthetics that as a register exclusive to regulated healthcare professionals, they do not consider the treatments performed by their members to be ‘beauty therapy’ services.

“Our standards and accreditation model stipulate that our members operate their practice in accordance with a medical model that have clear clinical guidelines and protocols to which they must adhere to. The statements that we have issued previously, based on the advice we have received from the Department of Health reiterate that there is a clear difference between the services carried out by healthcare professionals versus those offered by beauty therapists.”

She added, “Therefore, we are of the belief that this revision is to provide further clarity and reach to the beauty sector – but do not see it applying to medical aesthetics performed by regulated clinicians following a medical model. We have communicated this to our database today and have advised that we will seek absolute clarity from the relevant authorities early next week before advising further.”


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