The Tavistock gender clinic has been in the news over the last few years in relation to court cases and a recent interim report from Dr Hilary Cass assessing the quality of the care that had been provided.
There are fears that there are cases where minors have been provided with drugs and treatment for early transitioning where alternative considerations should have been involved. There are real worries that there could be people now who have realised that mistakes had been made when they were a minor as a patient at the Tavistock gender clinic, and who may now be impacted long term as result of the treatment they received.
This is a very sensitive issue that we as lawyers who specialise in medical negligence need to be available for to help people with. This is why we are able to provide free, no-obligation legal advice on a confidential basis to anyone who feels they need to speak to us.
Interim report: care at the Tavistock gender clinic
The interim report from Dr Hilary Cass looking into the matters at the Tavistock gender clinic have raised that there is a need for a significant shift in the way in which care and treatment is provided for those who are transitioning under the age of 18. It is clear that the now-former Tavistock GIDS (Gender Identity Development Service) was not the adequate solution.
Final recommendations and information from the reports are yet to be established, and we only have interim information at this stage. Information from the interim report, as well as experiences of former employees covered in the media, indicates that there has been a lack of modelling in respect of how treatment should be provided for minors in relation to gender dysphoria and transitioning services. There are also questions over the long-term safety of the drugs being used. Given how significant such treatments and issues can be, and the permanence in some cases for those who undergo transitioning, what is clear is that changes are required.
The report also follows the widely publicised case of Bell V Tavistock in which the Court of Appeal last year affirmed the current modelling that children are able to provide consent in accordance with the “Gillick” competency principle. Essentially, this means that children can consent to receiving drugs and transitioning services so long as clinicians are satisfied that the minor is intelligent and competent enough in their decision-making process. However, as we will go into more detail below, there are questions in relation to how clinicians have reached decisions, and whether other factors have been properly taken into consideration.
An assessment of the breach of duty matters
Given the nature of the services provided, the Tavistock gender clinic had an important duty of care for their patients. One of the major issues that has been raised in the media are allegations from former employers that there was a lack of modelling and consistency in the care that had been provided. There were suggestions that you could have two children with very similar experiences who could be given two completely different courses of treatment, depending on who it was that was conducting their assessments. There are also allegations that the basis on which services were advised was not sound enough in some cases.
Ultimately, what we could be looking at here is whether there has been widespread breach of duty on the part of the clinic in relation to services and advice that had been provided. If there is a situation where a former patient of the Tavistock gender clinic now realises that they have made a mistake, it is essential that their situation is investigated to see whether the Tavistock GIDS (Gender Identity Development Service) treatment plan was appropriate or not. If it is the case that factors such as other mental health matters were not properly considered, or the basis on which treatment was suggested and provided was not sound enough, we could be looking at serious mistakes that have been made that now may affect a person for the rest of their life.
A number of questions have also been raised in relation to advice given to not only the patients but also to the families. What is clear is that there needs to be a change in the approach to services for young persons transitioning to make sure that the care provided is right.
Free, confidential legal advice available now
Former patients of the Tavistock gender clinic may have been the victim of medical negligence if they now realise that mistakes have been made. We are used to representing people where there has been breaches of duty in respect of consent and advice, and we are here to help you now if we are able to do so.
Our expert team is happy to provide free, confidential advice on a completely no-obligation basis. If you feel that you might need to talk to us, we are ready to hear from you.
If we assess your situation and we believe that there could be a case to answer, you could be entitled to pursue a claim for compensation. If we believe that the case has merits, we may be able to represent you for a claim on a No Win, No Fee basis.
The content of this post/page was considered accurate at the time of the original posting and/or at the time of any posted revision. The content of this page may, therefore, be out of date. The information contained within this page does not constitute legal advice. Any reliance you place on the information contained within this page is done so at your own risk.
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