Sun, Jul 08, 2012 - Page 3 News List

Beauty treatment centers to face tougher rules: DOH

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

The medical cosmetology market in Taiwan is becoming chaotic and confusing to the public, the Department of Health (DOH) said yesterday, adding that it would soon establish an ad-hoc committee to control the situation.

Holding newspapers that showed advertisements for medical cosmetology clinics and pointing out the problematic messages they contained, DOH Deputy Minister Lin Tzou-yien (林奏延) said there were too many deceptive or exaggerated accounts in the advertisements adding “if we don’t control it now, it will be even more unmanageable in future.”

The quality of the clinics is inconsistent, with an increasing number of practitioners from various branches of medical care pouring into the booming medical cosmetology market, Lin said.

Lin added that aside from conventional plastic surgeons, doctors specializing in ophthalmology, urology, obstetrics and gynecologyare also performing medical cosmetology procedures — a confusing situation for the public which sometimes leads to medical disputes.

In addition, Lin said other problems included the fees charged for the same medical services often differ greatly among clinics, the unknown quality of medical instruments, the failure to explain possible risks to consumers, exaggerated advertising seen in text messages and the Internet and an unfit strategic alliance between different business sectors, such as promoting trial coupons and discounts.

The department said it has asked Chen Yu-ray (陳昱瑞), a senior doctor at the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, to play the leading role in establishing the ad-hoc committee to address the problems.

“Seeing that the market has become so chaotic, the first thing the department will do is to release an authorized certificate for qualified medical cosmetology practitioners and the education credits will be decided by the department,” Lin said, adding that the department is also to clamp down on exaggerated advertisements.

“Although we are unable to guarantee a beautiful result, we at least want to guarantee safety,” Lin said, adding the certification mark will make it easier for consumers to choose quality clinics.

Moreover, there are currently many medical cosmetology academies with their own certification system, Lin said, adding that actually medical cosmetology is not a branch of medicine which is misleading to the public.

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