While beauty salons and spas have suffered a public blow thanks to the Coronavirus, cosmetic surgeons have also seen their businesses take an unprecedented tumble.

With most treatments carried out by plastic and cosmetic surgeons classified as “non-essential’, their businesses have been forced to cancel or postpone all bookings until after the pandemic.

“We’ve been asked to close all non-essential cosmetic and beauty treatments and surgeries at our clinics,” says Doctor Ehsan Jadoon, director of Perth’s Medaesthetics. “Therefore we are not offering any treatments at the moment.”

While most of the beauty industry has been shut down for fear of spreading COVID-19, the cancellation of non-essential and elective surgeries carries a different purpose – to ration the limited supply of medical personal protective equipment (PPE) required by doctors on the front line. Doctors are continuing to report dire PPE shortages, with one Brisbane-based GP telling the ABC that the situation has become “truly scary.” And while no one can dispute the importance of ensuring Coronavirus-exposed medical staff have access to PPE, the knock-on effect to the cosmetic surgery industry has been a big one.

Like some businesses in the industry, Doctor Jadoon has been forced to find alternative measures in attempt to keep his business afloat, particularly given that a large percentage of his clientele are customers that fly in from interstate to see him – something that is no longer possible given the state-border shutdowns. “We’re carrying out our consultations, and making bookings from mid-May, hoping things will change in the next six to eight weeks. We also have an online clinic and retail store where we are offering free consults and skincare products. We have started to really focus on the online side of our business now, to help our cashflow and provide online service to Australians currently in lockdown.”

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