Plastic surgery isn’t a joke. Just like any surgery, you go through the knife and safety is a must. One false move and irreparable damages may occur.
That’s why it’s no longer a question why we should need to verify your attending surgeon. A licensed physician may claim to be a cosmetic surgeon. Having firsthand knowledge if your doctor meets the highest standards of education, experience, and ethics is an essential step.
This article isn’t about discrediting the capability of any surgeon or any licensed physician. Rather, this article aims to help future patients in getting a head start before their surgery.
Step 1: Choose an American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) Certified Member Members of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery or ASAPS are board-certified, it means that they have to pass a specialized board exam before they eventually become a member. On top of that, these surgeons also operate out of accredited facilities and follow a strict code of ethics.Choose wisely, and you can be sure that your plastic surgery is safe with quality care and outcomes. If possible, make a list of the surgeons that you would want to administer your surgery.
Step 2: Verify Your Surgeon’s ASAPS Certification via American Board of Physician Specialties After going through the process of choosing your board certified surgeon, it’s time to tick off your list by verifying your surgeon’s ASAPS certification. The American Board of Physician Specialties will provide you with the ways to learn if your surgeon is, in fact, a ‘certified surgeon’ through their organization.
Step 3: Verify their State Licensure Sometimes, a surgeon’s medical license is valid by either writing the medical board specifically per state or by visiting a state’s online license verification programs. These will show if the surgeon you choose has had a disciplinary action issued by the state.
Step 4: Verify Legalities after the Technicalities Like checking if your surgeon has a background in any disciplinary actions, suspensions, and revocations. You can find a good source of information regarding with any disciplinary actions by inquiring with the state medical board or several states’ medical boards.You may also visit www.docinfo.org for more information. Although, fees may apply for this service at that particular website but paying extra for information in exchange for the peace of mind it may give you is worth the deal.
Step 5: Verify for any Malpractice Lawsuits Going through malpractice might be a scary subject for some. However, checking for malpractice lawsuits is an educated decision you’re making for yourself. This step is also a very tedious and difficult area to research. There are surgeons who are wrongly accused, and there are those shady surgeons who haven’t been sued.
If you happen to find out that the surgeon has been filed with a recent lawsuit, don’t jump to immediate conclusions. Rather do these:
Hear the side of the surgeon you choose. Anyone can file a lawsuit easily at any time, whether they have a reason or not. That’s how democracy works.
Verify if the filed lawsuit is because the results weren’t what the patient expected or if something unforeseen arose. Like undiagnosed medical conditions, anesthesia complications, etc. In order to verify that there’s indeed a medical malpractice, there must be evidence of negligence during the operation.
If you find it hard to discover by hearing it straight from your surgeon, then be abrasive. Most surgeons won’t tell you about their lawsuits although, you’ve retained the right to ask.
Then time to go to the county courthouse in which your surgeon practices and request to perform a search for litigations, arbitrations, trials in the ‘civil index.’
You may contact the state’s Department of Insurance on where your surgeon is practicing. Take note though, not all states were created equal so you might or might not get all the information you could get.
If you can afford to spend more, you can hire the services of private and semi-private law firms to do the job.
So those were the steps to verify any information about a particular plastic surgeon. Knowledge is power, and nothing is wrong with checking information before going through surgery. It’s your life and your body that’s at stake here. So choose wisely and educate yourself for a safe surgery.
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