Can I have a facelift surgery (rhytidectomy) on the NHS?

If cosmetic surgery has to be carried out along with reconstructive surgery then the NHS may pay. They don’t, as a rule, pay for surgery which is carried out for aesthetic reasons only but if it is required along with reconstructive surgery, and, can demonstrate a clear medical benefit then they will cover the costs.

If you decide to apply as a NHS patient then you will have to be referred to a plastic surgeon by your GP. It is a good idea to talk to him or her regardless of whether you go through the NHS or as a private patient. He or she will talk through with you, your reasons for this surgery and can provide help and advice.

He/she will not sit in judgement on you or try to dissuade you. Your GP is concerned with your health and well being and if he or she feels that you would benefit from this type of surgery then he/she will support you in your decision.

What happens next is that you have to apply for help from your local health authority. This will include talking to a plastic surgeon and undergoing a psychological assessment from an NHS psychiatrist or psychologist. They want to make sure that you are physically and psychologically stable and fully understand what this procedure entails. They also want to be sure that there will be a clear, measurable benefit from this surgery.

This is not designed to put you off. It is meant to protect you and to make sure that you are making the right decision.

If the NHS turn you down then you will have to pay for the surgery yourself. As price is a consideration then you will be looking for reasonably priced surgery but don’t let this be your overriding concern. Finding a good, reputable surgeon is more important then getting a good deal. 

An increasingly popular option here is to go abroad for surgery. The prices are cheaper then the UK plus it will be carried out in an exotic location which means you get a holiday as well.

This is discussed in more detail in the next question.

Facelift Surgery Guide Index:

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