News And Blog

Changes for NSW Cosmetic Nurses in relation to Schedule 4 Medications

NSW Health has set additional requirements relating to the administration, storage and record-keeping of medicines commonly used for cosmetic purposes – such as anti-wrinkle injections and dermal fillers.

The amendments to the Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Regulation 2008 came into effect from 1 September and are intended “to improve the safety of the use of cosmetic medicines in NSW”.

The category “cosmetic medicines” includes botulinum toxins; calcium hydroxylapatite; collagen; deoxycholic acid; hyaluronic acid and its polymers; polyacrylamide; polycaprolactone; and polylactic acid.

The new regulation:

  • Prohibits a person other than an authorised practitioner or a nurse acting under the direction of a medical practitioner or nurse practitioner from administering cosmetic medicines (an ‘authorised practitioner’ includes a medical practitioner, nurse practitioner or dentist).
  • Requires a medical practitioner or nurse practitioner to personally interview (including via audio-visual link) before authorising administration of the cosmetic medicines.
  • If a nurse administers the cosmetic medicine, it requires records of the direction to be made and kept by the medical practitioner or another authorised practitioner.
  • If a nurse administers the cosmetic medicine, it requires administration records to be made and kept by the nurse administering on the direction of a medical practitioner or nurse practitioner.
  • Sets storage requirements on the occupier of the premises where cosmetic medicines are stored.
  • Requires businesses that provide services using cosmetic medicines to keep records made by the medical practitioner or another authorised practitioner and by the nurse administering on the direction of a medical practitioner or nurse practitioner.
  • Requires businesses that provide services using cosmetic medicines to have appropriate risk management policies and procedures in place to protect the health and safety of patients; appropriate equipment for use in a patient medical emergency; and to ensure that nurses are adequately trained for patient medical emergencies.
  • Requires businesses that provide services using cosmetic medicines to ensure that the regulations are complied with.

A breach of the regulation will attract:

  • A maximum penalty between $5,500-$22,000 and/or imprisonment for six months for an individual; and
  • A maximum penalty between $27,500-$110,000 for a body corporate.

These restrictions do not apply where the administration “is undertaken by an authorised practitioner or by an employee in a hospital acting on an authorised practitioner’s direction”.

The changes follow NSW Minister for Health Brad Hazzard requesting NSW Health “undertake a review to determine whether the regulation of cosmetic procedures was appropriate to ensure the safety of consumers”, and its subsequent delivery of the Report on the Review of the Regulation of Cosmetic Procedures.

As a result, in July this year, NSW enacted the Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Amendment (Cosmetic Use) Regulation 2021 – under the Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Act 1966
– to commence operation from 1 September 2021.