Ugly truth awaits beauticians in Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur (The Star/ANN) - Beauty centre operators and non-doctors found to be practising aesthetic medicine could be fined up to 50,000 ringgit (US$16,000) or jailed for up to two years once the amendments to the Medical (Amendment) Act 2012 and its regulations come into operation before year-end.

Health Ministry officials said Section 33 of the Medical (Amendment) Act 2012 stated that first-time offenders could be fined not more than 50,000 ringgit and jailed not more than two years while the fine could increase to not more than 100,000 ringgit ($31,700) and jail term to not more than three years for second-time offenders.

Deputy health director-general Datuk Dr S. Jeyaindran said the ministry was in its final stages of drafting the regulations following the amendments passed in Parliament in June last year.

"Beauticians can be hauled up by the Malaysian Medical Council (MMC) if they portray themselves as doctors or they carry out procedures that only doctors can do under the guidelines on aesthetic medical practice," he said during a press conference at the 2nd Malaysia-Singapore Conference of Aesthetic Medicine yesterday.

Dr Jeyaindran was asked if the ministry was taking any action to address loopholes in the law that did not penalise beauty centre owners who conducted invasive cosmetic procedures.

The Star recently reported that consumer bodies urged that they and untrained doctors be criminalised for carrying out the procedures.

Recently, guidelines on aesthetic medical practice was introduced and doctors who carried out the procedures and did not have the credentials to do so would be hauled up by the MMC for breach of professional code of practice.

Dr Jeyaindran said the first batch of 22 doctors had been registered with the National Registry of Registered Medical Practitioners Practising Aesthetic Medicine.

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