Australasian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS)


The Australasian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS) is the peak body for plastic surgeons in Australia and New Zealand, with a focus on aesthetic plastic surgery. ASAPS membership is exclusively composed of registered specialist plastic surgeons with world-class expertise in cosmetic surgery and aesthetic medicine.

ASAPS is on a mission to educate the consumer about the dangers of invasive cosmetic surgery procedures, currently carried out by medical practitioners not registered as surgeons, many of whom unlawfully use the title of ‘cosmetic surgeon’ – a title that is only earned by a registered, specialist plastic surgeon who has had Australian surgical training.


Australians spend over $1 billion per annum on more than 500,000 cosmetic procedures, more per capita than the United States.

Based on ASAPS’ experience and knowledge of the industry, it had been observed that practitioners who were actually not registered as surgeons were carrying out procedures under misleading titles, such as ‘cosmetic surgeon’, to allow them to broaden their services. This risked putting patients in serious danger.

This posed a significant challenge for the Australasian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS), the peak body for aesthetic plastic surgeons.

Pure Public Relations was tasked with getting the word out urgently about misleading titles and the potential ramifications. The urgency meant working quickly on a very tight budget. This strategy heavily leveraged earned media opportunities that were based on five key components:

  • Shared real experiences: using a delicate touch to find patients who had experienced adverse outcomes and were willing to share their stories.
  • Outcome examples: Where patient case studies were not available, Pure Public Relations aimed to draw attention to misconduct cases themselves without naming patients, as cautionary tales that highlighted the urgency for change.
  • Media education: proactive outreach to news, lifestyle, health and beauty journalists, as well as those who had previously covered cosmetic procedures. We created a media toolkit to educate journalists on the correct reporting of this issue, and the need to draw attention to it. 
  • Government relations support: working strategically to design media coverage opportunities that would coincide with what ASAPS and its public affairs firm were doing to amplify both ASAPS and the message.
  • Quickest and boldest media commentary and reactions: working hard to ensure that ASAPS’ comments were always the first to the media with strong language that cut through.

No matter whether the opportunity created was op-eds, interviews, timely media releases, or putting forward experts for comment, the ultimate goal was legislative change and informing the public about this pressing issue.


As a direct result of the media campaign by ASAPS and Pure Public Relations, the title of ‘surgeon’ will now become protected under National Law. This means that cosmetic surgeons who have not completed the Australian standard of surgical training will no longer be able to call themselves surgeons.

Pure Public Relations and ASAPS played a major role in this landmark decision by achieving coverage in some of Australia’s most popular mainstream news networks, as well as industry publications

This includes but is not limited to:

  • The Age
  • Sydney Morning Herald
  • The Australian
  • Weekend Australian
  • Herald Sun
  • Daily Telegraph
  • The Guardian
  • The Conversation
  • ABC News
  • SBS News
  • Channel 7 News
  • Channel 10 Melbourne
  • Channel 10 Perth
  • ABC News Melbourne
  • ABC News Sydney
  • Yahoo News
  • Daily Mail Australia
  • Sunday Examiner
  • MSN Australia
  • Mamamia
  • Daily Telegraph
  • Sunday Mail
  • Sunday Telegraph
  • NewsMail
  • Courier Mail
  • Plastic Surgery Hub
  • Lawyers Weekly Australia

The matters raised in this case study are matters of fact or the honest-held opinion of Pure Public Relations based on the material referenced therein and its own experience and investigations. Pure Public Relations has worked with ASAPS to bring this matter of  significant public interest to light.






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