Category: NUS Wales Policy
1. In 2017, the Welsh Government announced the opening of a transition-related healthcare service in Wales. Previous to this point, all Welsh trans people accessing transition-related healthcare through the NHS had to attend the Tavistock clinic.
2. After many delays, the service was finally opened in 2019. Currently, the service only offers non-surgical interventions, the main services being diagnosis and hormone replacement therapy (HRT). The Welsh Gender Team also only accepts referrals from trans people aged 17 and over, despite the large number of referrals to the under-17s clinic in London.
3. The service still acts on the basis of medical gatekeeping, where a clinician must "diagnose" a patient with the mental illness of "transsexualism". This is against international best practice as recognised by WPATH and WHO. Services for transition-related healthcare should instead be run on the basis of informed consent.
4. The long waiting lines, underfunding and excessive bureaucracy has created a trans healthcare crisis across the UK, with a high number of trans people accessing transition-related healthcare privately or self-medicating through buying hormones from online pharmacies.
1. NUS Wales should campaign for the Welsh Government to improve services around transition-related healthcare. This campaigning should aim to do the following.
2. Rather than the pathologising system of diagnosing trans people as mentally ill, trans people should be able to access prescriptions and referrals on a local basis on the basis on informed consent.
3. The Welsh Gender Team should aim to recruit and train specialists in transition-related surgery and provide suitable resources and training on effective methods of gender transition.
4. A service for under-17s should be available for trans people in Wales.
5. NHS Wales should offer services on the NHS which are currently difficult to attain including microdosing of hormones, facial feminisation surgery, hair removal etc