Choose a qualified medical practitioner
Your practitioner must be registered with the Medical Board of Australia.
You can check if someone is registered on the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (Ahpra) register of practitioners. You can also see their qualifications and if there are conditions or limitations on procedures they can perform.
Searching the register may not tell you enough about a practitioner’s skills and qualifications to make an informed decision. They may be a registered practitioner but have limited experience or knowledge of the specific procedure or surgery you want.
To choose someone who is knowledgeable, skilled, and experienced in performing your surgery, you should ask questions in your consultation. Use our question guide to find out about a practitioner’s qualifications, experience, and commitment to your care.
If you are not satisfied or comfortable with their answers, seek a second or third opinion.
You should consider talking to your GP and getting a referral before you have a consultation with the medical practitioner who will perform your cosmetic surgery. Your GP is a trusted source of information and can provide important patient medical information to the practitioner.
Understand practitioner qualifications
Medical practitioners have different levels of training and experience. This is an outline of the qualifications and experience of cosmetic practitioners in Australia.
Qualifications and experience: Currently, any registered doctor with a medical degree can call themselves a cosmetic surgeon. They don’t have to undertake any further formal training in surgery beyond their initial medical training.
If your practitioner identifies as a cosmetic surgeon, you should ask them about their skills and experience.
Years of training: Minimum 5 years medical education and training.
Qualifications and experience: A specialist surgeon has specialist surgical training. For example, in general surgery, plastic surgery, ophthalmology, obstetrics, gynaecology or oral and maxillofacial surgery.
A specialist surgeon will have the letters FRACS, FRANZCO, FRANZCOG or FRACDS OMS after their name.
Years of training: Medical degree plus 8–12 years of additional training.
We are working alongside state and territory governments to change the cosmetic surgery industry.