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     FrontPage Edition: Mon 21 April 2008

Regulations and guidelines on aesthetic medicine


Regulations and Guidelines on Aesthetic Medicine
Parliamentary QA
21 Apr 2008
Question No: 571
Question By: Mdm Halimah Yacob
To ask the Minister for Health
(a) when will the regulations and guidelines on aesthetic medicine be issued;
(b) what will the regulations and guidelines cover; and
(c) in the interim, whether doctors are allowed to continue with such procedures and how will the safety of patients be protected.
Reply from MOH
There is a wide range of practices which constitute the so-called “aesthetic medicine”. They range from high-risk procedures like liposuction to relatively low-risk practices like chemical skin peeling.
Our major concern is over high-risk procedures which can lead to severe complications including death, if they are carried out by operators without proper training or in ill-equipped clinics.
We will regulate these high-risk procedures, in the interest of protecting patient safety. We are studying the regulatory regimes in other countries and our regulatory measures will cover the training required, the practice standards, the premises where they can perform the procedure, and the quality assurance framework that must be in place.
We target to complete the draft regulations for public consultation within a month.
As for the low-risk procedures, the international practice is to let the professional bodies regulate them.
At our request, the Academy of Medicine and the College of Family Physicians are working together to draw up guidelines to govern the practice of such procedures. Their guidelines will similarly cover training requirements, practice standards etc. Achieving consensus is likely to take longer and they expect a few months to complete their work.
With or without explicit regulations, doctors have to comply with the Singapore Medical Council’s Ethical Code and Ethical Guidelines. If they fail to do so and their patients should complain to the Singapore Medical Council, they will have to justify their action to their peers. Our doctors are largely ethical and competent. We should strive to preserve this high clinical and ethical standard among our doctors.

Source: News 21 Apr 2008

Aesthetic Treatment Control Measures
22 Apr 2008
Question No: 574
Question By: Mdm Ho Geok Choo
To ask the Minister for Health in light of the recent guidelines on aesthetic treatment, what control measures are being put in place to ensure that these treatments are not driven underground.
Reply from MOH
As I have explained earlier, aesthetic medicine covers a wide range of procedures. My Ministry will regulate the high-risk procedures in the interest of patient safety. Any operator who insists on providing such high-risk procedures illegally will be dealt with by the law. Patients can also protect themselves by not seeking the services of such illegal operators.
As for the relatively low-risk procedures, we shall await the proposed guidelines being formulated by the professional bodies. We are also studying the regulatory regimes in other countries to see how best to regulate this business.
By and large, we have competent and ethical doctors. We will do our best to safeguard the high standard of our healthcare services.
Consumers have to play their part too. Do not be taken in by advertisements and where possible, try to get additional opinions from other qualified medical practitioners.

Source: News 22 Apr 2008

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