Under new Government proposals, cosmetic surgery clinics that fail to provide good quality care will be named for the first time. The Department of Health is launching an eight week consultation on expanding the ratings programme run by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) so that clinics are rated online. There will be four ratings: outstanding, good, requires improvement, and inadequate.

The aim, according to Jeremy Hunt the Health Secretary, is to improve standards and “help to end the lottery of poor practice”. The CQC remit will involve inspecting a facility or practice’s equipment, record keeping and administrative areas. The Department of Health said: “Shining a light on poor care in this manner is an essential part of developing an open and honest learning culture, where mistakes are acted upon and prevented from reoccurring.

Elise Bevan, a solicitor in the clinical negligence team at Penningtons Manches LLP said: “Regulation in this area has historically been poor so we welcome these proposals and hope they will improve the safety of cosmetic practices. It is important to stress that the new ratings programme applies to clinics rather than clinicians. Any practising doctors can list themselves as a cosmetic surgery expert without additional training, so patients still need to check their surgeon’s credentials. But this is definitely a move in the right direction to regulate the industry.”