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Enforcement Action Is Taken Against Private Clinics in England for Writing Puberty Blockers for Kids

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England’s Care Quality Commission (CQC) is set to take action against private healthcare providers prescribing puberty blockers to under-18s, defying the NHS ban on these controversial drugs. Following Dr. Hilary Cass’s guidance, the CQC will ensure compliance, amid concerns that for-profit clinics might create a two-tier system based on wealth.

Dr. Cass’s recent report emphasized the lack of evidence supporting puberty blockers’ efficacy in reducing gender dysphoria and raised concerns about their impact on teenagers’ cognitive abilities. She recommended banning their use in under-18s, a stance now adopted by NHS England.

The CQC will enforce compliance with Cass’s suggestions in order to stop private clinics from taking advantage of a possible “loophole” and making money off of demand. Clinics that are discovered to be in violation of these rules risk sanctions or maybe losing their registration.

Victoria Atkins, the health secretary, emphasized that commercial providers need to follow the NHS’s new strategy. Nonetheless, questions remain over whether NHS criteria pertaining to private clinics may be enforced.

While there are currently no CQC-registered private gender clinics that provide puberty blockers, some do, such as Gender Plus, provide older teenagers with cross-sex hormones. When prescribing such hormones to patients under the age of 18, Dr. Cass advised care.

Concurrently, Sue Evans, a former employee of the NHS trust Tavistock and Portman, is contesting the CQC’s acknowledgement of Gender Plus’s hormone clinic.

With the goal of ensuring safe and research-based therapies for young people who are unsure of their gender identity, the CQC’s action represents a significant milestone in the regulation of transgender healthcare in England.

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