Plans for tighter controls on non-surgical cosmetic procedures do not go far enough and could actually lead to greater harm, according to a leading practitioner.

The Scottish Government has published the findings of a consultation which showed that 98% would like to see measures introduced which would restrict who can administer lip or face fillers and mean they are subject to rigorous hygiene and clinical standards.

Health Secretary Humza Yousaf said the government wanted to ensure that treatments were carried out by "appropriately trained" practitioners to avoid the risk of "irreversible damage" because complications can usually only be corrected with prescription medicine.

A far lower majority - 61% - agreed that individuals who are not qualified healthcare professionals should be allowed to administer treatments if they are licensed.

Most who disagreed said that procedures should only be performed by healthcare professionals.

Dr Nestor Demosthenous, who has a private clinic in Edinburgh and is a qualitifed doctor, said it was “very encouraging” that 98% of of respondents agreed that further regulations were needed.

However he added: “It’s a bit frustrating that the expert advisory board that they [the Scottish Governemnt] set up themselves -which I was part of a few years ago which ran for 18 months – pretty much told them the same but they scrapped all that advice and decide to bring out a public consultation.

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“But it’s really encouraging that what we suggested then is being suggested now."

He said it was of some frustration that the Scottish Government had said it is “considering legislation” given the weight of evidence in favour of greater safeguards.

He said: “The wording is a bit waffly.

“I think it’s very frustrating that we have as much evidence as we can that shows that non-medics are dangerous and carry higher risks than medics and cannot treat those risks if they occur and yet action hasn’t been taken.”

He said the fact that only 61% agreed that non-healthcare providers should be licensed backed up the overwhelming view in the industry that treatments such as fillers and Botox should only be administered by those who are medically trained.

He said: "If licensing comes in then it somehow validates that it’s acceptable and legal for non medics to inject patients with filler.

"At the moment it’s only allowed because there isn’t a law against it. Making a law for it will be dangerous and potentially open a can of worms."

The UK's cosmetic surgery industry is currently worth an estimated £3.6 billion. Non-surgical treatments such as botulinum toxin and dermal filler injections accounting for 9 out of 10 procedures, valuing the sector at approximately £2.75 billion.

‘Botox’ and other botulinum toxins are already regulated under reserved UK legislation on prescription-only medicines, with professional guidance that requires any prescriber to have professional knowledge and a face-to-face consultation with the person receiving botulinum toxin before they can prescribe it for the person receiving it and before a health professional can administer it.

The consultation received 437 responses with 382 responses from individuals and 55 from organisations.

An overwhelming majority - 90% - said pharamacists who administer treatments outwith the NHS should be regulated in the same way as other healthcare professionals by Healthcare Improvement Scotland (HIS), which carries out inspections of independent clinics.