Positive step forward for patient safety in Australia

In a positive step forward for patient safety in Australia, it finally appears the Government is going to take legislative steps towards regulating the use of fabricated and misleading titles (such as ‘cosmetic surgeon’) currently being used by medical practitioners and non-specialist surgeons, which ultimately can cause confusion for patients seeking plastic or cosmetic surgery in Perth.

In the latest media statement from the Australasian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS), their recent online poll revealed some insightful results.

Of those surveyed:

  • 92% agreed that patients’ safety is put at risk when a doctor performs surgery without having completed surgical training.
  • 93% agreed that it would be easier for patients to differentiate surgeons from doctors if medical professionals were required to only use their AHPRA titles.
  • 86% agreed it is wrong that doctors without any surgical training are allowed to call themselves surgeons.
  • 81% agreed that the title ‘cosmetic surgeon’ implies the doctor has completed surgical training.
  • 77% agreed that banning the title ‘cosmetic surgeon’ would help patients separate the doctors from the surgeons.

What’s alarming though is those surveyed aged 18-24-years are less likely to prioritise a doctor’s surgical qualifications when considering surgery, and out of the five questions asked in the survey, it was on four that those in the 18-24-year-old age group were significantly different from the rest of the population.

In a society now where younger patients are significantly influenced by what they see on social media – and it is generally these platforms that are primarily used by unregulated doctors to target this rising generation – it is now more imperative than ever for it to be mandatory that all doctors only use their AHPRA approved titles to represent their accredited training.

Click here to view the ASAPS media statement.

Click here to learn why you should choose a Specialist Plastic Surgeon when considering a plastic or cosmetic surgery procedure.