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Vital Doctor Checklist


                                            Plastic surgeon preparing for surgery

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Your doctor holds the appropriate ABMS (American Board of Medical Specialties) certification and is a member in good standing of key professional societies.  Medical facilities are fully accredited and anesthesia is only administered by a qualified medical professional.



Your physician has hospital privileges to perform the procedure you are having at a local accredited hospital.  Even though your procedure may be performed at a fully accredited freestanding or office based surgical center – it is best to confirm that your physician meets the standards to perform the same procedure at a local hospital.

** In some states, there is no mandate for a doctor to carry malpractice insurance.  However, all hospitals require the physicians with privileges to carry insurance, which is why choosing a doctor with hospital privileges for the procedure you are having is so imperative.

If the doctor has an in-office operating suite, make sure that it is properly accredited.   For more information, check out the website of the American Association for Accreditation for Ambulatory Surgery Facilities (AAAASF) at AAAASF.



Your physician exhibits behavior that is forthright in listening and addressing your goals.  You also are offered solutions that you understand but not additional, unrelated procedures.  Your physician and the support staff treat you with respect and dignity.  They are clear, concise, organized and attentive.



You have researched your physician with your state medical board that the physician is licensed to practice within the state and there are no prior or pending actions against him or her.  The most important issue to address is to make sure there are no real negligence lawsuits, as these can jeopardize the status of a physician’s medical license.

  • The American Board of Medical Specialties - ABMS  
    American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), a not-for-profit organization, assists 24 approved medical specialty boards in the development and use of standards in the ongoing evaluation and certification of physicians. ABMS, recognized as the "gold standard" in physician certification, believes higher standards for physicians means better care for patients.
    This site requires registration but is free.



  • Online Listings of Physicians by State - Doc_Board


  • Federation of Medical Boards Disciplinary History Service - Doc_Info


  • E-Law and KnowX might have information on your plastic surgeon’s background.


  • Canada - The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons in CanadaRCPSC


  • Australia - Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons - Surgeons






The physician has performed the procedure you are considering many times in the recent past and also has shared photographs of actual results achieved on actual patients.



You are given all the information needed to make an informed decision – including informed-consent documents to sign.  Even if the treatment is one you have had in the past, each procedure requires your consent.



Your physician requires a health screening or evaluation prior to treatment or surgery.  Any physical or emotional health conditions you have should be addressed, specifically how these may influence your cosmetic enhancement choices.



You are not looking for or offered a special deal.  You accept the defined cost of surgery and the variable costs,  including surgical room time, anesthesia, and any unexpected events.

It is extremely important to ask what the specific physician’s revision policy is so that you know what is going to be expected of you in case of any unforeseen complications that might arise.



Your physician only practices in the area of expertise directly related to his or her ABMS certification.






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