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Physicians Aesthetic Coalition Formed to Promote Patient Safety With Exclusive Commentary From Jonathan Sykes, MD, President, AAFPRS

Only on Exclusive medical esthetics-focused commentary by Jonathan Sykes, MD, president of The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery follows this news item explaining how medical spas and esthetic surgeons can work with this new organization.

Four nationally known medical societies recently announced the formation of the Physicians Aesthetic Coalition, created to promote patient safety in cosmetic medicine and aesthetic surgery through public and physician education initiatives. The coalition is a cooperative, multispecialty effort of The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), the American Academy of Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS), the American Society Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ASOPRS) and the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery (ASDS).

“All of the organizations have active and successful patient safety initiatives. However, we feel that a unified voice representing more than 8,000 board-certified physicians will further advance our goals of informing the public of patient safety issues and continuing patient safety educational efforts to all members,” says Jonathan Sykes, MD, president of the AAFPRS. “We look forward to working with our colleagues across specialties to increase patient safety for anyone considering cosmetic medicine or aesthetic surgery procedures.”

"Along with the increasing popularity of aesthetic surgery and noninvasive cosmetic treatments, an increasing and disturbing number of nonqualified clinicians and unproven treatments are being promoted to the public. This is a significant patient safety issue," says Felmont F. Eaves, III, MD, president of the ASAPS. “Through the coalition, we can address these issues on a stronger platform than we could individually, using credible medical evidence to help patients make informed decisions.”

“One of the coalition’s founding principles is to develop educational forums for the public and media, transparent and free of commercial bias,” says Jeffery S. Dover, MD, president of the ASDS. “During the next several months, we will be announcing new resources to help differentiate fact from fiction.”

“Nothing is more important to us, both as a medical society and as individual physicians, than keeping our patients safe,” says Jeffrey A. Nerad, MD, president of the ASOPRS. “We are hopeful that this new coalition will help us in achieving this end."

Jonathan Sykes, MD, president of The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery tells how spas can take part in this new organization. Why is the Physicians' Aesthetic Coalition (PAC) beneficial to the industry and its patients?

Dr. Sykes: The PAC is comprised of representatives from the core four plastic surgery specialties: AAFPRS (facial plastic surgery), ASAPS (plastic surgery), ASOPRS (oculoplastic surgery) and ASDS (dermatologic surgery).

The goals of this coalition are to help educate patients and to promote patient safety. The core four specialties require their members to have a high level of training and promote quality physician and patient education. The PAC benefits patients by promoting patient education, which empowers them with choices of various procedures and products, facilitating their ability to make an informed choice. How can medical spa professionals and esthetic physicians work with the PAC to ensure better service for their clients?

Dr. Sykes: The coalition is committed to promoting the highest level of professional care of cosmetic medicine to their patients. This commitment includes educating patients on the training and experience levels patients should demand of their provider, appropriate locations for treatment under the supervision of a physician working within their scope of training and providing information about which treatments work and are safe.

We want to help patients see through the barrage of industry marketing so they can select which treatments are best for them. By promoting the safe use of industry products and appropriate training pathways, the coalition will ultimately benefit those companies that provide safe and effective products by enhancing patient satisfaction.