A social media campaign has been launched to warn Victorians over dodgy cosmetic surgery practices.
A social media campaign has been launched to warn Victorians over dodgy cosmetic surgery practices.

Dodgy cosmetic clinics spark social media warning

DODGY underground cosmetic quacks keen to exploit the growing push towards Instagram perfection are being targeted by a new Victorian campaign.

With one in four Health Complaints Commissioner investigations related to cosmetic procedures, the State Government is taking to social media to warn would-be influencers of the dangers where they are most likely to pay attention.

As unregulated clinics increasingly popping up across the state, Health Minister Jenny Mikakos is urging patients to check clinics are registered to avoid the risk of disfigurement, infection and potentially deadly complications.

Ms Mikakos warned aggressive new trends and cheap deals were targeting vulnerable customers with unlicensed facilities, low-cost imitation and online influencers emerging on the market.

To combat the trend, the social media video campaign warns that procedures such as liposuction, breast augmentation or tummy tucks cannot be performed in unregistered settings, proving questions to ensure the treatment is safe and ways to report those which are not.

"We're taking action to drive down avoidable harm and prevent patients from suffering significant financial loss," Ms Mikakos said.

"Cosmetic surgery is more popular than ever, but if proper safety measures aren't followed it can be extremely dangerous. That's why we're ensuring patients are aware of the risks and receive the highest standards of care."

"We want to stop Victorians being lured into 'cheap deals' on cosmetic surgery and liposuction, which in some cases can leave them with permanent damage, disfigurement and severe trauma."

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The campaign, which has been translated into English, Mandarin, Khmer, Vietnamese, Thai and Korean, follows reforms making it mandatory that all surgery must be provided by a registered private hospital or day procedure centre.

They can be viewed on the department's Better Health Channel at betterhealth.vic.gov.au