The foundation of ATAI is education with ethics. With statements in the marketplace from medical aesthetic training organisations, ‘We can train anyone. It’s really the insurance companies who make the rules as to what the eligibility criteria is’ we knew there was a dire need in Ireland for a training company that had a principled position suiting the medical aesthetics discipline. We do not believe in ‘training just anyone’ in aesthetic medicine we believe it is unethical to train non-HCP’s in many aesthetic modalities.
a uniform curriculum
Apart from identifying a lack of robust ethical training, we could also see an opportunity to evolve the sector with theory delivered through online learning. This would allow a uniform approach to theory curriculums while offering the learner more flexibility. We started with the Level 7 syllabus for Injectables in Aesthetic Medicine. Our level 7 syllabus is not to be taken lightly. over 200 hours of learning to produce a capable aesthetic practitioner.
When we were investigating the injectables training industry, one common theme kept on coming up. “I did not feel ready to inject on the first day, and after the one day course, I did not feel confident enough to practice”.
It made complete sense to us, no matter if you were a doctor or nurse that is used to using syringes, injecting a patient on the very first training day, seems somewhat irresponsible. We approached this in three ways; first, we sourced custom made, lifelike injection mannequins for injection technique. Secondly, our course takes on average three months to complete not, one day. Third, we brought in a practical clinic programme; learners see a minimum of 30 patients. While we facilitate four practical clinic days, we do not put a limit on how many a delicate can do. If we and or the learner deem more practical clinics are needed then the person partakes in more practical clinic days, the aim is confidence and competence as should be the goal with any aesthetic training.
ATAI is the only aesthetic medicine training college in greater Ireland teaching to a Level 7 standard.
Through our growing network of doctors and nurses, we encourage support. Another problem that came up during research was many graduates felt on their own after training. This was foreign to medical professionals as medicine is typically collaborative. Both doctors and nurses told us that it seemed every person for themselves. Any health care professional understands that the ability to talk with peers and colleagues is imperative for positive clinical outcomes.
ATAI promote a holistic approach to aesthetic medicine. Aesthetic medicine is not merely the use of injectable cosmetics. However, to the greater training industry, you would think that is all it is. Patients are not looking for injectors; they are looking for skin care professionals that can treat the skin like the organ that it is. The ability and responsibility to carry out a high-quality consultation and an ability to recommend alternative and potentially more suitable treatments is one of the main aims of the training given. Removing vascular or pigmented lesions, removing veins, UV damage, addressing lax skin, and skin diseases this is all the remit of aesthetic medicine. At ATAI, this range of specialties are covered, with more and more being added to the catalogue of available training.
Aesthetics is not facilitating an ‘insta-hun’ to have unhealthy lips. It is aiding people to address multiple concerns they may have with the largest organ of the body. This is achieved through good health & through exercise, not smoking, a balanced diet, education, and at times with medical devices.
When it came to aesthetic beauty training, we found another problem — training colleges offering laser qualifications yet only using an intense pulsed light machine (IPL) to facilitate the training. Then we wonder why there are so many cases of burns and ineffective treatments in the unregulated beauty sector. First and foremost our laser-based training is delivered using a laser platform. Secondly, our course structure has in-depth, hands-on training.
aesthetics, not beauty
Apart from the issue around laser & light training we also found another problem. Since the beauty industry split into two categories, traditional beauty and device led clinical aesthetics the training industry once again failed to meet the new demands. It stands to reason that if you have a separation in the industry, you will also have a changing cohort of people wanting to enter the industry.
Even with the latest level 4 courses coming out of the beauty targeted awarding bodies, they have still not addressed the fundamental problem of beauty diplomas not fit for purpose with candidates wanting to enter the aesthetic sector. Prospective candidates have little interest in studying tanning, nails, massage, lashes and brows. Moreover, HCP’s have no interest at all in studying modalities without an evidence base.
We have now started to address this hole in the industry; we have two new qualifications coming out. A Level 4 Certificate in Aesthetic Therapy and a Level 5 Certificate in Aesthetic Therapy. Both targeted at candidates with no existing experience or school leavers. We also have Level 6 and 7 versions coming soon for HCP’s.
who do we work with?
While we prefer to stay brand agnostic we do work closely with Allergan. We are currently the only Allergan approved training company in Ireland. We use Allergan Botox® and the Allergan Juvéderm range of dermal filler in our training courses. We also use the STERiGLIDE™ Cannula in our advanced masterclasses. We have several brands of medical devices including, Cynosure, Lumenis and Viora.
it is only the beginning
Over the last two decades, the industry has changed. With advancements in technology, results typically only available under the surgeon’s knife are now accessible in skin clinics, medical clinics, even beauty salons. The sector has changed; however, the training industry has struggled to keep up.
We are far from content with the overall level of training on offer in the medical and non-medical aesthetic sector. We intend to change this.
Only together can we achieve our goals, or as we like to say, the only thing missing from ATAI, is YOU.