The UK’s main gender identity development service for children is leaving thousands of vulnerable young people at risk of self-harm as they wait years for their first appointment, according to a highly critical report.
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) took immediate enforcement action against the Tavistock and Portman NHS foundation trust when it completed the inspection in November, which rated the service overall “inadequate” and highlighted overwhelming caseloads, deficient record-keeping and poor leadership.
The commission, which heard from young people using the service, parents, carers and staff in the course of its inspection, told the trust that services and waiting times in the Gender Identity Development Services (GIDS) in both their London and Leeds clinics “must improve significantly”, demanding monthly updates on numbers on waiting lists and actions to reduce them.
The service has faced major scrutiny in recent years, with some former staff and campaigners raising concerns about the “overdiagnosing” of gender dysphoria, the consequences of early medical interventions and the significant increase in referrals of girls questioning their gender identity.
Source: The Guardian, 20 January 2021