Mothers of ‘vulnerable’ teenage daughters take the NHS to court as they claim their girls are being fast-tracked to ‘irreversible’ gender-change treatments
- Anna Castle 17-year-old daughter is waiting to be seen at an adult gender clinic
- The teen, who has ADHD, wants cross-sex hormone drugs and a mastectomy
Two mothers of ‘vulnerable’ teenage daughters are set to take the NHS to court, claiming their girls are being fast-tracked into ‘irreversible’ gender-change treatments.
Anna Castle and a second mother are fearful their daughters are being allowed to make ‘life-changing decisions’ without any proper exploration of how their mental conditions are influencing the desire to transition.
They want doctors to assess the girls for conditions such as autism first. Key to their legal claim is NHS guidance for children’s gender services issued in June which acknowledges that there is ‘an increased prevalence of neurodevelopmental disorders’ among thousands of youngsters on the waiting list for gender clinics.
It means NHS gender medics must now order a psychological assessment of patients aged 18 and under to establish whether their autism or other conditions such as attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD) is a factor in their gender issues.
However, some 17-year-olds are being referred straight to adult gender clinics which do not have to explore a patient’s potential autism before they are given treatment such as powerful hormone drugs and surgery.
Anna Castle (pictured) and a second mother are fearful their daughters are being allowed to make ‘life-changing decisions’ without any proper exploration of their mental conditions
NHS gender medics must now order a psychological assessment of patients aged 18 and under to establish whether their autism or other conditions are a factor in their gender issues
The mothers are set to file a judicial review with the High Court next month.
It will argue that the NHS must make the psychological checks compulsory for adult services too. Ms Castle, 35, from London, whose 17-year-old daughter is waiting to be seen by doctors at an adult gender clinic, told the Mail her daughter first mentioned being transgender during the first Covid lockdown in 2020 when she was just 14.
She said the teenager, who has ADHD, wants to take cross-sex hormone drugs, which can lead to infertility, and double mastectomy surgery to remove her breasts.
Ms Castle said: ‘Neuro-diverse kids are so vulnerable as it is… It can’t go from there being massive concerns within the children’s service to such a drop in care and safeguarding as soon as they turn 17.’
Ms Castle’s co-claimant, who wished not to be named, said that her daughter, who has Asperger’s Syndrome, also wants her breasts removed and is due to be referred on to the adult gender services when she turns 17 next month.
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