Being part of the aesthetics industry, you’ll no doubt have seen organisations like the BCAM, CPSA, JCCP and BACN popping up quite a bit. But, perhaps you’re unsure about what these groups actually are - after all, it can all be a bit confusing. So, let me break it all down for you…
Self-regulating bodies in the aesthetics industry
As we all know, the non-surgical aesthetics industry in the UK is largely unregulated and there’s no current Government legislation in place - so, it can be a pretty scary place for clients seeking aesthetic treatments. Everyone wants peace of mind that they’re going to a practitioner they can trust, but this can be hard given that almost anyone can get their hands on injectables, etc. So, in a bid to try and bring standards, guidelines and safety to the world of aesthetics, voluntary, self-regulating bodies like the BCAM, CPSA, JCCP and the BACN have been established. And the purpose of these associations is to provide trustworthy means for the public to identify practitioners who have the right training and qualifications, as well as providing lots of useful information about treatments. Let’s take a closer look at each of these bodies...
Who are the BCAM?
The BCAM - British College of Aesthetic Medicine - is a regulatory body that represents doctors and dentists practising aesthetic medicine. And, like all of the voluntary organisations I’m going to talk you through here, the BCAM strives for high standards of safety in the field of aesthetic treatments - and they do this in several ways…
First off, the BCAM helps clients who are looking into aesthetic treatments from medically qualified practitioners by allowing them to search its website for its members. And they’ve also produced lots of handy info on a range of treatments from chemical peels to microneedling and dermal fillers to help clients make an informed decision. From a practitioner standpoint, the BCAM benefits its members by providing support, further educational opportunities, and a space to network with colleagues. Members can also attend regular conferences and meetings all with the purpose of continuing to push for safe, ethical practice.
Who are the BACN?
Similarly to the BCAM, the British Association of Cosmetic Nurses (or BACN, for short) is another regulatory body but, this time, it’s just for nurses. And all of its members must agree to a strict Code of Conduct, which emphasises the importance of performing safe treatments. With over 700 nurses registered with the organisation to date, the BACN provides its members with the opportunity to meet with colleagues, guidance on best practice, and a supportive environment where professional development and additional learning and training are facilitated.
So, the BACN is not only a service which aids members of the public who are seeking safe, well-trained aesthetic nurses, but it also provides members with ongoing support - so, its benefits are pretty great for both clients and practitioners.
Who are the JCCP?
Standing for ‘Joint Council for Cosmetic Practitioners’, the JCCP has established a register off the back of recommendations from Health Education England (HEE). The register lists aesthetic practitioners and training providers who have the right qualifications and meet certain standards of practice. And, as well as displaying them on the register, the JCCP also accredits and endorses these practitioners and trainers as being of the highest standard. To join the JCCP’s register, members must meet an agreed set of standards, relating to the JCCP’s Competency Framework and those set out by the CPSA (which I’ll come to next).
The JCCP’s website allows clients to look up members on the register and view their qualifications, and has two sub-sections - one for practitioners from medical backgrounds (like doctors and dentists, etc.) and one that lists members that don’t have a medical background, like beauty therapists. They’ve also put together lots of information about treatments like Botox, fillers and laser and light therapies for members of the public.
Who are the CPSA?
The CPSA, short for ‘Cosmetic Practice Standards Authority’, is a regulatory body that’s addressed the need for a tighter focus on client safety by compiling a list of Clinical and Practice Standards for aesthetic practitioners to follow. And the aim of this is to make sure that clients only receive the highest standard of care when undergoing non-surgical treatments and that practitioners are suitably qualified, have the right training and work under up-to-date guidelines to deliver safe, ethical treatments.
With a set of overarching principles and specific guidelines for treatments like skin rejuvenation, Botox, and fillers, members of the public can search for practitioners who fulfil the CPSA’s standards by heading to the JCCP’s website - like I mentioned above.
Although these bodies all have slight differences, they all have the same underpinning motivation: to bring some sort of regulation to a concerningly unregulated sphere and to promote the safety of clients - something I think we can all get behind.
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