Gender Recognition: Health Services

Women and Equalities written question – answered on 8th February 2019.

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Photo of Paul Sweeney Paul Sweeney Shadow Minister (Scotland)

To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what steps her Department plans to take with the Department for Health and Social Care to ensure that trans patients do not have to seek unaffordable private healthcare as a result of long waiting times in order to receive treatment and medication.

Photo of Paul Sweeney Paul Sweeney Shadow Minister (Scotland)

To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what steps she plans to take to improve transition healthcare for people with gender dysphoria.

Photo of Victoria Atkins Victoria Atkins The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department, Minister for Women

The Government Equalities Office liaised closely with the Department of Health and Social in developing the commitments set out the LGBT Action Plan. These include the appointment of a National Adviser, who will focus on reducing the health inequalities that LGBT people receive when accessing the NHS.

We are aware demand for gender identity services is growing at a significant rate.

NHS England increased investment in these services in 2016/17, from £26million to £32million, and this figure of £32million has been the overall financial investment in these services each subsequent financial year in-cluding the current year of 2018/19.

Between July and October 2017 NHS England and NHS Scotland held separate but related public consultations on proposals for new service specifications that, if adopted, describe how specialised gender identity services for adults will be commissioned and delivered in the future.

Final versions of the service specifications will be used to inform a process of competitive procurement that will determine which organisations are best placed to provide specialist gender identity services. The process of procurement will be managed by NHS England, with the involvement of NHS Scotland.

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