Family Doctors May Be Empowered to Hand Out Hormone-Altering Drugs on Demand

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 06: NHS doctors take part in the Pride in London parade on 06 July, 2019 in London, England. The festival, which this year celebrates 50 years since the Stonewall Uprising, attracts hundreds of thousands of people to the streets of the British capital to celebrate …
Wiktor Szymanowicz/Future Publishing via Getty Images

Local doctors in Scotland will be allowed to offer powerful hormone-altering drugs upon request without the need for consultation from gender specialists in order to speed up waiting times for people to ‘transition’.

National Health Service (NHS) Scotland, alongside the country’s deputy chief medical officer, has called for family doctors to be able to prescribe “bridging” hormone prescriptions to patients who have received a referral to a gender specialist clinic but have been put on a waiting list.

The call comes as four gender identity clinics have seen a rapid and unexplained increase in people seeking treatment, with some new patients expecting to wait around four years on waiting lists, leading some to seek hormone drugs online, The Telegraph reports.

Therefore, the report said that local General Practitioners (GPs) should be empowered to prescribe the drugs in order to prevent people from self-medicating.

However, many in the medical industry have criticised the plan, arguing that local GPs are not trained in dealing with such patients. Others cite a lack of scientific understanding of the long-term ramifications powerful hormone treatments can have on patients, with the NHS admitting that some side effects of such drugs can include infertility and blood clotting.

Dr Catriona Morton, of the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) Scotland, said: “Our membership tells us that GPs often feel it is outside their area of competence to undertake assessment or treatment for patients with gender dysphoria.

“Furthermore, a major issue facing this area of healthcare is the significant lack of robust, comprehensive evidence around the outcomes, side effects and long-term consequences of treatments for people with gender dysphoria, particularly children and young people.”

The director of the campaign group For Women Scotland, Trina Budge, added:  “When concerns are growing about the efficacy of these treatments, compounded by significant issues over lack of long term studies and harms to brain and bone development, it seems reckless to cut out specialist diagnosis teams and mental health treatment.

“The surge in new patients, particularly amongst teenage girls, needs to be investigated before assuming fast-tracking of medicalisation will solve their often complex problems.”

The expansion of transgender medicine into the GP sector has been increasing in the United Kingdom, with gender clinics throughout the country being overwhelmed by requests.

In a test pilot, supposedly intended to alleviate the strain, GPs in Sussex have been told that they will be financially compensated for every person they provide “cross-sex hormone therapy” to and more cash for annual health checks performed on trans, non-binary, or intersex patients.

While it is not currently known why there has been such a surge in people seeking trans medical procedures, research has found that the number of children seeking gender reassignment therapy increased by an astonishing 20 per cent during lockdowns in Britain.

The Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Trust, which was responsible for commissioning the new report, claimed that the updated guidance for GPs will not extend to children and therefore will not include puberty-blocking drugs.

A spokesman for the left-separatist Scottish government said it “is committed to reducing inequality – in all its forms – and we welcome the report. We will continue to work with our partners to improve the health and wellbeing of our LGBTI communities, and are considering the recommendations.”

Follow Kurt Zindulka on Twitter here @KurtZindulka

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