Dr. Tracey Bell – programme lead of the postgraduate certificate in Non-surgical Facial Aesthetics – explains the importance of this level 7 certificate and its significance to the future and why anyone wanting to do any form of injectables will need this qualification.
An interview with Dr. Tracey Bell about Non-Surgical Facial Aesthetics
What drives you in this industry?
Value yourself, value your staff and you value the treatments and the products, and you never deter from this.
The thing is, aesthetic medicine is one of those huge growth industries. With regards to regulations, it doesn’t exclusively belong to anyone. There has been a huge surge in the number of products available, the treatment modality and the use of the educational resources and, because of this high demand, it has to be an area that is regulated. It is more dangerous than any dental procedure I ever provide. The demographic of the patient profile has changed so much compared to 18 years ago when I began. When I first started Botox, the average patient was in their mid-forties with a few wrinkles and they would pay about £700 and you’d see them once a year. You knew what the product was and where it was placed and you knew it was done in a proper clinical environment. The problem that you have now is you get younger patients, coming in at a more regular frequency and shorter intervals, and they don’t know what’s going into their face. Different practitioners; at salons and parties. The risk has always been there, but if you put all of these things together then the risk increases too.
What is your background in aesthetics?
And so, my story into aesthetics starts in 2002; one day I looked at myself and thought how tired I looked but I didn’t feel tired. And so, at 32, I said to myself: “I need a facelift.” But, my mother recommended Botox, and after some research, I had the realisation that I could do it as well. Following this, I went to London and did a 2-day course in injectables. If there is one thing I’ve learned, it’s the importance of evidence-based medicine.
It started because I was a patient. And now, I wear two hats: I’m me, as a consumer, for example, I sit in that chair because I want to be forever young. And then, I am the practitioner, I want my patients to be safe, I want them to have treatments that work and I want evidence-based results.
What made you decide to partner with ICE?
That’s easy – Professor Cemal Ucer. Throughout my career, I have been to many training courses up and down the UK, but I always remember the implant diploma I did with him. He went above and beyond any tutor I’d ever known. So, when I had the conversation with Cemal, I knew I didn’t need to worry about the level of education, I didn’t need to worry about the facilities, I know that Cemal cares, loves education and he has a strong work ethic. And because he cares – not just about the business, but about the people too. And from a practitioner point of view, I was very fortunate that I always had a thirst for learning, but it wasn’t until I did my MA, in Dental Law and Ethics, that my eyes opened up to the importance of education and the term autonomy. I like pathways, and in dentistry, the risk has grown, we are professionals and we owe it to our patients that we shouldn’t just be reading CPD articles, we need to always and forever improve our skills.
Where do you see the future of aesthetics heading?
Regulation. Risk management. It has got to become more regulated.
We can talk about the JCCP and Save Face, and they are great. These organisations are trying to create a safer future, but I think ultimately, there will need to be some legal obligations. The thing is, the public are starting to ask questions: they want to know what qualifications you have and pharmaceutical companies do as well. They have set criteria and, unless you have a level 6, in education you can not attend their courses. I don’t want a piece of paper for a 2-day course, I want a PGCert. I want a diploma and ultimately a Masters. And that can only happen through validated learning.
What are the benefits of completing a level 7 accredited course in NSFA?
Simple – safety. Not just for you and your practice but for everyone. From a risk management point of view, I want to be able to show anyone who questions me, I have done a continual framework of education in aesthetics. Today, there is too much risk and we need more stringent regulations. Now there are so many complications. I love the fact that the University of Salford has got on board because it’s like going back to school, but this time it’s a proper school.
Who is this course aimed towards and how would it enhance their career?
This course is going to show you how to mix Botulinum Toxin and I’ll show you the research on the five different types.
I’ll show you about Dermal Fillers and where they should go.
So, the course is for anybody who has a medical background that wants a level 7 qualification and can listen, learn and reflect on their practice. It’s for beginners or for those who have been injecting for 18 years, but they will need the level 7 certificate.
This course will open up opportunities and get us to expand and think outside the practitioner’s nutshell. So, anyone and everyone should do this course. This qualification will outweigh and amount of years of experience. And at the end of the course, when you look back at your e-portfolio, which is so important, you can see how good of a practitioner you actually are and know you are safe.
What do you think about 1-day courses in Non-Surgical Facial Aesthetics?
I think they are probably a brief overview. It’s like watching the advert for a blockbuster movie, you get the idea but you don’t know everything. You can’t learn everything in one day. The 1-2 day courses are basically the trailer but what you really need is to watch the full movie if you want to know what really happens.
How much hands-on practical training will a delegate gain with this course?
I hope 50% or more. When I’ve looked at other courses, it’s very much based on how quickly they can get you through and there are 150 hours of reading. I want practical learning. I spoke in-depth with the University of Salford and Cemal and I said the e-portfolio and building of clinical cases, the process from when the patient walks in the door, to the medical history to the provision of the treatment, to the results is all going to come down to the success of the candidates on this course. I want to know that when they leave they are as competent at level 7 as they should be. And with the success of the Dermal Academy at ICE, with the whole framework and system, it’s a win-win for everyone. And this is why ICE is such a unique facility to be able to hold any educational course whereby you need practical experience.
This course will start in October and will consist of 14 days (including academic, observation and clinical).
If you’d like any other course-related information, contact us here and we will be happy to help.
To apply for the NSFA course, click here.
To be a model for our non-surgical facial aesthetics treatments, apply here.
Dr. Tracey Bell is primarily based in the Isle of Man but also has a clinic in Liverpool. Tracey has over 20 years of clinical experience and believes that education, understanding and informed consent are all vital aspects of the patient journey. In addition to a Master’s in Dental Law and Ethics, she has completed a Bond Solon Expert Witness Course. As of January 2020, Tracey is now a member of the ACE (Aesthetics Complications Expert)Group.