·      Pharmacist calls for industry regulation over how fillers are bought, sold and used in the UK

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An online pharmacy has called for an urgent review on how cosmetic injectables are supplied to healthcare professionals – and in turn often vulnerable patients.

Regulation has not been achieved despite BAAPS efforts to regulate an industry often refereed to as ‘the Wild West’.

Springpharm, a UK based online pharmacy for healthcare professionals is championing a new way to regulate the industry – not by individual practitioners, but to (controversially) blow the lid on the supply chain servicing it. 

Andrew Burr from Springpharm says there are 5 core areas that need addressing:

1.    Unqualified users

2.    Remote prescribing

3.    Cross contamination

4.    Parallel imports (storage and efficacy of products) and fake products

5.    Mislicenced products

Andrew believes addressing these five things can bring about safety for consumers undergoing cosmetic skin rejuvenation treatments, who are often being mistreated and misinformed

So what next? 

Andrew says: “If we continue as an industry to ignore the elephant in the room we are effectively complicit in the next PIP style scandal. As history teaches us, healthcare professionals will not be held accountable – but ignorance is not an excuse. 

“At Springpharm we have had enough and believe it’s time for a change. This new year we want new regulations to protect patients, but we want patients to protect themselves too by demanding change.”

In order to lead the injectables industry in changing its fundamental offerings, Springpharm has implemented measures for transparency:

– They have a two-tier prescription process in place to eliminate forged prescriptions for multiple use; this stops things like Botox parties in kitchens by removing the ability to use a prescription numerous times

– They only sell products to registered healthcare professionals

– The prescriptions are named for the patients specifically, not the doctor/nurse

So what can patients do to make themselves safer? Andrew suggestions they take the following steps:

– Firstly choose a reputable expert that’s regulated by an official body. Ask to see qualifications. 

– Make sure your products has your name on the box; ask to see the label before treatment

– Check the intended use/licence for the specific product you’re offered; not all injectables can be used all over the face, as example.

– Ask where the product originated from