Woman dead after ‘boob job’ by tourist who had just arrived in Australia
Friday - 01/09/2017 11:51
PATIENTS will remain at risk in unregulated clinics if the right rules are not put in place for sedation, a leading expert has warned.
The president of the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists (ANZCA), Professor David Scott, said cardiac arrests and severe toxic reactions have been occurring at clinics for the past few years and “until we have appropriate regulations in place they will continue to occur”.
He has written to NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard seeking a meeting after a 35-year-old woman died after she suffered a cardiac arrest during a breast procedure at a Sydney beauty clinic.
NSW Police say Jean Huang died on Friday after she was allegedly administered a local anaesthetic and breast fillers by Chinese tourist Jie Shao, 33, on Wednesday at a Chippendale salon.
Ms Shao faced Central Local Court this week charged with causing reckless grievous bodily harm and using poison to endanger life and police say they are now considering further legal action.
Prof Scott said he wants to see guidelines across the country that require sedation to be done in registered facilities.
Mr Hazzard said he hadn’t yet seen Prof Scott’s letter but would meet with ANZCA.
“I am appalled that these circumstances could have occurred at all, but I have to be very careful about what I say as health minister because there are now criminal charges,” he told AAP on Friday.
“On the broader issue of procedures being carried out in a non-regulated clinic, there would appear to be some very complex issues which I’ve asked the Department of Health to review.”
A NSW court heard Ms Shao was on a tourist visa and not qualified to carry out cosmetic work in Australia at the time Ms Huang was injected.
She appeared in court via video link from Surry Hills Police Centre on Thursday where she was seeking to be released on bail on charges that included administering a poison.
The 33-year-old had only been in the country five days by the time she was taken into custody on Wednesday night.
Ms Shao’s arrest followed the procedure she allegedly performed at the Medi Beauty Clinic in the inner-city suburb of Chippendale. The procedure was to put fillers into each breast.
Police allege Ms Shao administered lidocaine, an anaesthetic, as well as an “intoxicating substance”, the drug tramadol, into Ms Huang’s chest.
It will be further alleged Ms Shao injected Ms Huang through a catheter and then injected the lidocaine into Ms Huang’s chest, before injecting the “breast fillers”.
When Ms Huang went into cardiac arrest she and two other staff members tried CPR until paramedics were able to revive her.
It’s understood Ms Shao met Ms Huang through mutual friends and Ms Huang agreed she could perform the procedure.
Police prosecutor Sergeant Rutzou told the court Ms Shao was due to leave Australia yesterday.
Bail was opposed because Ms Shao posed an unacceptable risk to the community and was a flight risk as she had no ties to Australia and was facing serious charges, he said.
He said that if Ms Huang died more serious charges would be laid.
The court heard Ms Shao had a masters degree from a UK university and specialised in dermatology — but she was not qualified to practice here.
“It’s clear she was working at a cosmetic surgery where these sorts of procedures were carried out,” Mr Rutzou said.
Legal Aid lawyer Mary Underwood argued Ms Shao could be released on bail with strict conditions including not carrying out any beauty treatments and not approaching employees of the Medi Beauty Clinic.
Magistrate Sharon Freund said she believed the prosecution case was a strong one and if convicted Ms Shao faced a lengthy jail term.
The magistrate told the court Ms Shao had admitted to administering local anaesthetic and breast fillers to Ms Huang.
She denied Ms Shao bail, saying there was an unacceptable risk she would interfere with witnesses or “endanger” the community.
“In my view it’s a very strong prosecution case and in the event that she’s convicted ... I’m of the view that she will receive a custodial sentence,” Ms Freund said.
Ms Shao was remanded in custody to reappear in court next week.
The Medi Beauty performs non-surgical facelifts, fat freezing and anti-wrinkle injections. According to the company’s Facebook page, the Chippendale clinic opened on May 30 this year at the Central Park building’s retail space.
The Australia Society of Plastic Surgeons said no cosmetic procedure was without risk.
“While we can’t comment on this specific case which is the subject of police charges, we can only reiterate that no cosmetic procedure is risk-free. This includes procedures such as lasers, fillers and anti-wrinkle treatments,” said Professor Mark Ashton, President of the Australian Society of Plastic Surgeons.
“We cannot emphasise enough the importance of people being aware of the risks and doing their research into the qualifications of their practitioner and facility where their procedure is being conducted.
“Many of these procedures are invasive in nature or involve prescription item drugs which can be toxic if administered incorrectly,” said Professor Ashton.