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Entrepreneurial doctor opens new medical aesthetics centre

Published:Sunday | October 5, 2014 | 10:00 AM
Dr Arusha Chambers, dermatologist and entrepreneur. - Photo by Janet Silvera

Janet Silvera, Senior Gleaner Writer

A western Jamaica doctor and entrepreneur is knocking the roadblocks to acquiring equipment and supplies for the medical aesthetics industry.

"Medications and devices that are commonplace and easily imported elsewhere remain unregistered and still require special permits for importation, despite tireless efforts," says dermatologist Dr Arusha Campbell-Chambers, operator of Montego Bay's newly launched and first Skin Body & Mind Clinic and Institute.

Chambers opened for business on September 27, at the LOJ Complex in Montego Bay. The new operation, in which Chambers invested in excess of $2 million, complements her nine-year-old Dermatology Solutions Skin Clinic and Medi-Spa in the same complex.

The mission is to help bolster the still relatively "untapped health tourism industry", she says, which has been bandied about by successive governments.

Chambers has pulled together a team specialising in adult internal medicine, general surgery, haematology/oncology, family practice/clinical Christian Counselling Psychology and nutrition, the idea being to cater to the complete wellbeing of her patients, clients and students.

The first of its type in Montego Bay to offer such comprehensive aesthetic care, Skin Body & Mind's services include treatment of hair, nail and skin disorders, lasers, chemical peels, microdermabrasion, injectable treatments, minor surgical procedures, facials and therapeutic massages.

Fountain of youth

"We have always strived to keep abreast of the latest technologies and advances in patient care," said Chambers, adding that an exclusive 'Fountain of Youth' procedure was to be introduced.

The procedure consists of a number of natural, non-surgical treatments which she said were creating waves worldwide in treating hair loss, stretch marks, scars and ageing skin.

"These treatments have minimal downtime and are safe for all skin types," said Chambers.

The cost of consultations at the clinic ranges from $5,000 with the dermatologist to $8,000 with the oncologist.

Procedures vary, with facials starting at $4,500, skin peels start at $8,000, while laser treatment is $10,000 up and microdermabrasion is $9,000 up.

Chambers said traditionally more women seek the service, but male clientele is increasing, adding that the clinic treats age groups ranging from babies to the elderly.

At the institute, the plan is to offer courses to include chemical peels and microdermabrasion, introduction to dermatology, wellness, weight management, nutrition in chronic illnesses, diabetes, thyroid disease and cancer education, as well as unusual courses in areas such as cancer survivorship, entrepreneurship and customer service.

Other courses

In addition, the 'Fountain's Beauty Academy' will incorporate courses in aesthetic skin care, make-up artistry and massage technology.

The institute aims to train persons from overseas, clinical medical students, and also has courses for medical doctors, which include diabetes and management of thyroid diseases, and for health-care providers and nursing home care givers and caterers.

"We are teaching them on wellness, weight management and nutrition in diabetes, and hypertension and diabetes management," she said of the latter group.

For courses in skin care or facials, massage technology and make-up artistry, the course accommodates "just about anyone over age 16".

Chambers and her team were among the exhibitors at the Jamaica Product Exchange trade show at the Montego Bay Convention Centre last month, where she began forging linkages with individuals and companies in the manufacturing and hospitality sectors.

janet.silvera@gleanerjm.com