Cavendish Clinic was founded in 2011 by consultants from Guy’s and St. Thomas’ Hospitals. It all started when one of the plastic surgeons, Jamil Shaikh, heard of new technology for non-surgical fat reduction that had shown great promise with its initial results, so he wanted to establish a clinic to offer this to his patients as an alternative to liposuction.
Other aesthetic clinics in London seemed to be missing extensive medical oversight, and we felt that was the key difference we could make. Within our network of medical professionals, not only did we have a range of expert opinions available for decision-making, but these experts are also the most qualified amongst their peers. This meant that before we offered any particular treatment or surgery, we were able to understand how it worked, any associated risks, and what results could be expected. That was our key difference, and although it delayed our opening to take the time to do this research, we felt this evidence-based approach should become the core philosophy of our business.
Our medical relationships meant that on the rare occasion that something did go wrong, we would be able to make a call and organise an immediate appointment with one of the leading experts in that field of medicine. Between us, we know who is the best in their field in London, and in most cases, we have personal relationships with these experts. We felt that being able to extend that knowledge base to our patients would ensure that our patients were in safe hands.
Between holding NHS positions, private practice, continual professional development, and family responsibilities, it was not easy to find the time to research the treatments available and find premises. But once we found premises, we were ready to launch in October 2011. We also had to get the right team together. We needed the best practitioners in London, and it took time to build a great team. We invested heavily in training and wanted to create an environment for the team that was positive, supportive, and allowed opportunity for growth.
Once we opened, we learned that if our mantra was going to be that patient care would be at the centre of everything we do, then medical expertise alone is not good enough. It needed to be coupled with five-star service. Whilst recognising that it is not possible to perfectly meet service expectations in every scenario, we wanted our team to exceed those expectations as often as possible, and where we did not, apologise and look to exceed expectations as we focused on making that individual situation right.
So, as we approach the landmark anniversary of our first decade of business and the accomplishment of operating four clinics, we can look back and see that we have learned a lot! It was much harder than we imagined and a lot more time consuming. There were many challenges we overcame and many lessons learned.
As we go through the current global pandemic, it reminds us of what the most important things are for us to focus on. We are now focusing on NHS work, either COVID- or cancer-related cases, and that will be the priority for the near future. When we are able to re-open, we look forward to continuing Cavendish Clinic with more innovative, medically-proven treatments in a safe environment for the new world we now find ourselves in. We will only do what we believe is safe – in many cases beyond government guidelines – and we look forward to welcoming back existing patients and meeting new ones.