China launches crackdown on illegal cosmetic surgery:

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Chinese authorities have launched a year-long crackdown on practitioners of unregistered cosmetic surgery, the official China Daily said on Wednesday.

The new campaign, launched by the country’s health ministry in conjunction with internet, drug safety and industry regulators, will also focus on illegal advertising and the unauthorized production and supply of drugs and appliances used in cosmetic surgery, the paper said.

The report said there are tens of thousands of cosmetic surgery practitioners in China, but fewer than 3,000 are registered with the authorities.

It said unlicensed facilities are responsible for more than 60 percent of serious medical complications arising from cosmetic procedures, with some patients known to have gone blind as a result of improperly administered injections.

In a document published last weekend on its website, China’s National Health and Family Planning Commission said ”lawless elements” had been involved in the illegal manufacture and use of cosmetic drugs like collagen and botulinum. It said it would establish a blacklist and punish firms involved in illegal practices.

(Reporting by David Stanway; Editing by Michael Perry)