Experienced plastic surgeon Rozina Ali departs Norfolk after spending nearly decade in region
PUBLISHED: 08:39 28 February 2017 | UPDATED: 08:39 28 February 2017
She has changed the appearance of countless patients but now plastic surgeon Rozina Ali is ready to start a new chapter in her life.
Dr Ali has secured a reputation as a high-profile surgeon within East Anglia, after spending around eight years working in NHS and private hospitals in the region.
That work has seen her present shows on BBC (Horizon - The Truth About Looking Young) and Channel 4 (How Not To Get Old), and her clinics have brought patients from all over the world to Norfolk, where she has been based.
But for a plastic surgeon specialising in reconstructive microsurgery and breast surgery, parts of Dr Ali’s character are unusual for someone in her profession.
For example she was born into a Islamic family and has embraced the religion as her own - yet this has not stopped her from devoting her work to making people look better.
So how does she square improving patients’ appearance with believing in a religion which many followers use to justify hiding women’s appearances behind veils and headscarves?
“I’m sure there are many muslims who would say I shouldn’t be altering God’s work,” Dr Ali said. “Some would probably say it is sacrilege.
“But my family have always been very supportive and never raised it as an issue.
“The reason I do it is because it’s a positive surgery - I’m not taking anything away from that person.
“Some surgeries for cancer or other health conditions can leave restricting consequences on a person’s life, but that is not the case with plastic surgery. It has nothing but benefits.
“Many women base how they feel about themselves on their own appearance.
“I love the hunger for life that my patients have, they want to do something to make them feel better so they come to me and get it, and I respect that.
“I think getting plastic surgery is a form of self-determination.
That outlook has never wavered and Dr Ali has devoted her life to plastic surgery.
Born and bred in Liverpool to parents from Pakistan, she trained in London before delving deeper into her specialism by training in Taiwan, one of the most prestigious countries to train in for plastic surgeons.
She then moved back to the UK and got a job in Norfolk as a locum, before becoming a permanent doctor who worked for both the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and BUPA (now Spire) Hospital.
She estimates 80pc of her patients were treated on the NHS, meaning the majority of her patients needed treatment for health reasons - rather than cosmetic reasons.
“My self-belief and resilience comes from my years of study, travel, and realisation of just how different my personal code and surgical ethos is compared to others,” Dr Ali said.
“I’m very committed to my profession, highly trained and meticulously skilled. This enabled me to really believe in myself and push forward, even when the odds were against me.
“This self-belief is something that I believe is hugely important - particularly for women in medicine.”
There are not many plastic surgeons in Norfolk and Dr Ali has been kept busy during her time here.
But she found the relaxing pace of life in the county the perfect antidote to the daily pressures she faced at work.
“It’s a lovely area,” she said.
“I really enjoyed meeting my patients from East Anglia as well.
“I’m so grateful to the kindness and decency I have experienced from the people of Norwich for welcoming me so warmly when I first arrived to work at the local hospitals.
“I will very much miss the nursing staff at the hospitals and I’m grateful to all my patients for the trust they place in me.
“I’ve built some wonderful relationships here, which have sustained me and will support me in the years ahead.”
But after nearly a decade of working in the region Dr Ali now believes it is time to move on and she is in the process of planning to run clinics in London - more specifically Chelsea and Harley Street.
“I’d also like to thank everyone that has supported me over recent months whilst I prepared to make this big step towards a brighter future,” she added.
“I am very much looking forward to welcoming my patients, new and old, to my clinic in London.”