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Unqualified injectors use 'phoney titles' to fool customers


The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has been urged to beware of cosmetic injectable firms conning customers. has highlighted fears that some firms may use unqualified practitioners using “phoney titles” to fool customers in the multi-million pound UK market.

According to, which is backed by the Department of Health, unqualified and unregulated injectors who may have no appropriate training are using titles such as Advanced Aesthetic Practitioner and Aesthetic Therapist.

Both qualified and non-qualified practitioners are using such titles, so people seeking cosmetic treatment have been urged to check if the person using them is actually a doctor, dentist or registered nurse.

Sally Taber, who is responsible for the management of the Standards and Training principles for, said: “Our message is simple, these popular treatments are safe if carried out by appropriately trained providers in a clinical environment.

“Misleading titles such as Advanced Aesthetic Practitioners and Aesthetic Therapists are just not acceptable.

“Marks of approval from institutions such as the Academy of Cosmetic Training or the Cosmetic Treatments Industry Association are also misleading; these are member organisations which are training unqualified and non-medical individuals such as beauty therapists to provide treatments.

“Consumers should look out for a Treatments You Can Trust logo, and ask for confirmation that their practitioner is registered with us and is a regulated doctor, dentist or registered nurse.” claims to be the only scheme to register appropriately qualified and regulated providers of cosmetic injectables.



Readers' comments (5)

  • Well, as far as I’m concerned this is no different to a hospital HCA who can catheterize and cannulate being called an Assistant Practitioner as this is just as confusing to the general public

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  • You need to ask who is prescribing these treatments. They should be checking their competence as ultimately they are responsible. The comment regarding HCAs should be treated with the contempt it deserves.

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  • A HCA is a HCA regardless of whether she has an NVQ or one of those foundation degrees. This is exactly the same: a group of people - in this case Beauticians - pretending to be something that they are not. If HCA’s wants to do nursing tasks then they should do their nurse training, it is as simple as that.

    To those qualified colleagues who think that this is a bit harsh, just wait until your job is “profiled” and your employer deems it acceptable for a HCA or a Pharmacy Tech to do it, as its happening to me and several of my colleagues.

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  • I made the comment regarding HCAs. My job has been reprofiled many times and using evidence of improving quality, practice, skills and innovation and teamwork more often than not it has proved to be positive. I have even been made redundant but this allowed me to expand my horizons (even with the mortgage, kids and other expenses) and I now have skills that I would not have had previously. HCAs are part of the team that deliver care along the patient pathway i.e. what the patient needs. As long as the team are competent and the patient gets the care they need does it matter if a trained, assessed and competent HCA delivers it?

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  • Yes it does matter - to me anyway. You can train anyone to do anything and a HCA - with or without an NVQ - may be the appropriate person to wash and dress people, to do basic dressings, to undertake observations even ecg’s etc; HCA’s are their to augment qualified staff not replace them. Its fine having all these unqualified people working when things are running smoothly, but as soon as there is an incident like a cardiac arrest, it is left up to the qualified nurses to sort things out, which is fair enough if there are enough nurses, but not if they‘ve been replaced by HCA‘s.

    I have no truck per se with HCA’s, but I do with management and the way they are attempting to use inappropriate people for jobs that they’re not suitably qualified to do. Its not fair on the customer, the HCA or the qualified nurse who is ultimately accountable for what the HCA’s do.

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