Plan for GPs to advise on cosmetic surgery

The guidelines would be added as a supplement to the current Good Medical Practice code and were drafted by a committee of the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council as part of a report on a possible national framework for cosmetic medical and surgical procedures.

The guidelines stipulate the first consultation should be with the operating doctor and the assessment should include an exploration of why the procedure has been requested, including a patient’s perceived need to please others or feelings about their appearance.

“If there are indications that the person has self-esteem or mental health problems, the person should be referred to a GP or an appropriately qualified health professional (e.g. psychiatrist, psychologist or specialist counsellor) for review,” the draft guidelines state.