Brexit Effect on Cosmetic Surgery

Should I go or should I stay?

Over the last few months we have all been inundated with claims and counter claims over the benefits of leaving or remaining in Europe. The debate will be settled by our votes. We will weigh up the conflicting arguments on the economy, immigration and the effects of European Federalism and the meaning of the nation state to each of us as individuals . How complex this all is! I promise you that this newsletter is not about persuading you either way. This whole massive “in or out debate” has made me think about the how, as individuals, we end up making complex decisions such as whether or not we should undergo cosmetic surgery and who we would trust to deliver this.

Would severing links with Europe have any effect on the regulation and practice of cosmetic surgery in the UK? The Keogh report published in 2013 in the UK, was an important recommendation document concerning how cosmetic surgery should be regulated to ensure cosmetic practitioners are skilled and responsible, the products used are safe and of high quality and that the public are properly informed about cosmetic procedures having accessible redress and resolution if things go wrong. Our government is still working out how to implement these recommendations. There are also strong links between the state of the nation and the state of our health, but I suspect that being either in or out of Europe will not have any affect on the eventual implementation of Keogh’s proposals, which any responsible cosmetic surgeon would welcome.

Regarding the decision to leave Europe or not there are some parallels with a patient looking for the correct cosmetic treatment or choosing the right surgeon. The link with the grand debate on Europe is that it takes a lot of thought and courage to make major decisions. Should I do it or should I not? Should I go with surgeon X who specialises in technique α or should I go with surgeon Y who claims that he is brilliant at operation β. They both tell me they have the correct method and have the expertise to see me through. They are both confident and sure. X warns me of dangers of operation β and Y is dubious about technique α. They reassure you that they have the solutions to your concerns and fears. They provide pamphlets, brochures and website links to give you more information to bring home the message. Do you decide by information gleaned or given, surgical charisma or your instinct?

And here the parallels of cosmetic surgery and the Brexit debate break down. The final decision may be as hard for you to reach but for cosmetic surgery there should be no deadline. You can re-visit the debate for as long as you like. You need to become as informed as possible to empower you to make the correct decision. Only when you hear or experience consensus concerning your treatment, will you be more confident in making a critical decision about surgery and the role of instinct should diminish concerning your surgeon of choice. It has to evolve into something called trust!

We may not get to that point in time on this important EU referendum debate.