Former staff members from a controversial pediatric gender clinic that United Kingdom authorities last year ordered closed are reportedly back at work in a new facility referring youths to transgender procedures.
Gender Plus, which was established after NHS England ordered the London-based gender identity clinic at the Tavistock and Portman Trust to shut its doors amid safety concerns, is offering “specialist gender assessment for children, adolescent and young adults” that can lead to “onward referral to an appropriate endocrine or surgical team,” according to the Daily Telegraph.
Gender Plus is also planning to establish a private “associated hormone clinic” that will be headed by Paul Carruthers, who has been a member of the Tavistock NHS team since 2015.
Seven people — about half the staff — at Gender Plus have also worked at the Tavistock Gender Identity Development Service, including Dr. Aidan Kelly, Dr. Claudia Zitz and Dr. Jos Twist, the Telegraph noted.
NHS England announced recently that puberty blockers would be given to minors only in clinical trials, citing a local of “evidence to support their safety or clinical effectiveness.”
Following nearly two decades of concern that the clinic was rushing children into transgender procedures, Dr. Hilary Cass led the independent review last year that raised safety concerns about the Tavistock gender clinic, which ultimately led to its closure.
A protest sign sits outside the Tavistock clinic in London on July 29, 2022. (Guy Smallman/Getty Images)
“It is worrying that staff from a failed service have set up a private practice,” Stephanie Davies-Arai, founder of the Transgender Trend campaign group, told the Times of London. “Those in private practice should be following NHS protocols in order to be safe. The health secretary needs to investigate these clinics, some of which have been running for years, and to look at their standards of practice.”
“We take a developmental approach to deliver an accessible, holistic and comprehensive service that goes some way towards meeting the huge level of unmet need that exists currently. We are aware and up to date with the recent NHS England service specifications,” a spokesperson for Gender Plus told the Telegraph.