Cosmetic implant register set up to safeguard patients

The Breast and Cosmetic Implant Registry has been set up to allow officials to trace patients in England with other cosmetic impacts.

The move comes after faulty Poly Implant Prothèse (PIP) silicone breast implants were recalled in 2010, which affected thousands of women.

The inclusion of individual patients' details will not be mandatory. However, all providers of breast implant surgery will be expected to participate in the scheme, with participation also set to be noted during Care Quality Commissions (CQC) inspectors.

The register is expected to record over 20,000 cases of implant surgery each years and will enable complications with specific implants to be picked up and traced to relevant patients.

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said: "We want the NHS to be the safest healthcare system in the world and anyone who chooses to have a cosmetic procedure has the right to safe care.

"The PIP breast implant scandal in 2010 affected thousands of people which is why we asked NHS Digital to develop a new register which will allow people to be traced swiftly if that is ever needed.”

Noel Gordon, chair of NHS Digital, said: “We look forward to working with patients and providers to ensure that the benefits of this important registry are delivered."

The British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons, the Association of Breast Surgery and the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons welcomed the registry: "This will protect patients by providing a way to actively monitor all implants, track and trace their use and provide data for further research, which may be used to further technological advances.

"We hope that all patients will consent to the submission of data on their behalf."

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