The Botulinum Toxin and Cosmetic Fillers (Children) Bill has passed its third and final reading in the Lords and will be given Royal Assent.
The Botulinum Toxin and Cosmetic Fillers (Children) Bill is a Private Member’s Bill “to make provision about the administration to persons under the age of 18 of botulinum toxin and of other substances for cosmetic purposes; and for connected purposes”. The Bill will come into force later this year.
“Safety and professionalism should be at the heart of everything we do and with so little accountability this just hasn’t been the case in far too many circumstances. The passing of this Bill is a step in the right direction, but we have still more work to do.
There are so many dire repercussions due to the lack of regulations in our industry, beginning with reputable, fit for purpose qualifications, having to compete with cheaper unverified substandard training, or worse still no training at all, resulting in under qualified therapists who are able to provide rapidly advancing treatments without any verification of insurance.”
– Mille Kendall MBE
We spoke with JCCP Chair, Professor David Sines CBE about the imminent passing of the Bill and what it means for our industry.
What are your thoughts about the Bill?
The Bill will come into force later this year and we look forward to working with colleagues within the aesthetics sector to support the implementation of this important piece of legislation. The JCCP has been actively engaged in providing advice to government departments as part of the formulation of this legislation and has campaigned for its legal enforcement.
Whilst welcoming the new Bill, the JCCP is mindful that much more needs to be done to ensure that the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) and the Committee for Advertising Practice (CAP) promote best practice that requires all workers in this industry to be committed to the responsible advertising of aesthetic products and services, which do not mislead customers with regard to risk, benefits and outcomes. Importantly we are also most concerned that the irresponsible use of social media posts can promote elective, medically related aesthetic procedures to persons who are under the age of eighteen; many such postings (which are targeted at both sexes) fail to describe the risks of emotional and psychological harm that some aesthetic treatments can result in if they are provided on the basis of promoting a ‘false picture of perfection’. Such inappropriate and irresponsible advertising and social media posts (that apply images of face and body parts that are often digitally edited) target vulnerable children and your persons, exploiting and reinforcing underlying emotional and psychological challenges that relate specifically to body image, wellbeing and mental health.
What does the Bill mean for the industry?
From the date that the new Bill is legally enforceable in statute it will become a requirement for all aesthetic practitioners to ensure that they comply fully with the requirements set down within the context of this new legislation. Effectively no invasive nonsurgical cosmetic treatment that relates to the insertion of a dermal fillers, or to the injection of toxins, will be permissible to any person under the age of 18 unless there is an explicit medically determined reason for their administration. The JCCP is of the opinion that only designated registered healthcare professionals (within the limitations of their competence and scope of regulated practice), following the undertaking of an informed pre-treatment consultation and the exercise of assessment and clinical judgement with the younger person, can determine whether a consultation and/or a procedure is ‘medical’ in nature as defined within the meaning of the new Bill. Patients/ younger members of the public present with a wide variety of physical, psychological or psychosocial symptoms and effects that relate to predisposing conditions. Having performed a diagnostic assessment of the patient, suitably qualified and experienced healthcare professional practitioners will now be required to demonstrate whether there is an explicitly determined and compelling physical and/or psychological/psychosocial therapeutic benefit arising from either the consultation and/or the treatment of a specifically diagnosed condition or its associated presentations. If there is a demonstrable clinically determined therapeutic benefit to the person then that treatment episode is deemed to be ‘medical’.
The new Bill therefore will have specific implications for all members of the industry and will require that an explicit medical determination is made from the date that the new legislation in legally enacted prior to the administration of any invasive non-surgical cosmetic procedure, such as a dermal filler or an injectable toxin to any person under the age of eighteen