Leeds Gender Identity Service offers assessment and support to people aged 18 and above with Gender Dysphoria. The service provides assessment which allows the team, in conjunction with the individual, to consider the diagnosis of gender dysphoria and readiness to move forward.
The team complete a holistic assessment which includes looking at mental, social and physical health. Once the assessment stages have been completed including the confirmation of a diagnosis, and the service user is ready to move forward with treatment; the care pathway can then be considered.
The care pathway includes a prescribing clinic that can initiate hormone treatment, voice workshops we are able to refer individuals for treatments, surgical opinions and gender reassignment surgery as appropriate.
The service is commissioned by NHS England and accepts referrals from across England.
Our team consists of:
Clinical nurses who see clients through the assessment process and act in the role as lead professional to those clients moving into the care pathway.
A consultant endocrinologist who holds a combined clinic for individuals alongside the doctor with specialist interest in this area.
A doctor with special interest in endocrinology, who is responsible for the running of the prescribing clinic. The doctor sees clients referred for hormone treatment initially for assessment and if all is well will initiate hormone treatment. The service request that blood tests are completed by the individual’s GP practice to ensure safe prescribing can occur. Once an individual’s hormone levels are stable the client will be transferred to their GP for continued hormone prescription.
A pharmacist who has a dual role within the service. The pharmacist works alongside the prescribing clinic providing support when needed and sees individuals on a 1:1 basis for counselling in relation to hormone treatment. The pharmacist also has a non-medical prescribing role, seeing individuals in the prescribing clinic for the initiation of hormone treatment. It would be expected that the individual’s GP would take over this role once hormone levels are stable.
A voice group facilitator who provides eight group sessions for women to help support individuals using their voice in a way which will provide individuals with confidence.
Consultant psychiatrists who assess for the diagnosis of Gender Dysphoria and the readiness and eligibility to progress on to the care pathway. They also provide the medical opinions for surgery as appropriate.
An occupational therapist who has a split role within the service acting as a lead professional to those in assessment and the care pathway and offering occupational therapy specific assessment when required.
The team request a referral from the individual’s GP; this shows the GP is in support of their client accessing specialist service intervention and shows commitment to shared care arrangements for hormone treatment.
Leeds Gender Identity Service welcomes any comments or feedback which service users wish to share with the team. Individuals can do this electronically through email, in writing or through the patient experience questionnaires given to service users following each appointment. The service will look at all feedback provided and respond to the comments / feedback given. Please note that we are unable to respond to correspondence via email if this contains sensitive or identifiable information.
Currently the service offers two eight week courses per year for transwomen, and day-long workshops for transmen. Maggi Stratford is the voice teacher for transwomen and transmen at the Leeds Gender Identity Service.
Anti-androgens reduce the male biological sex characteristics this can be used to block the effects or reduce the levels of the biological sex hormone. Leuprorelin is usually used for this.
Oestrogens are female hormones. They will cause the body to develop female characteristics; however they will not cause the reversal of all masculine features.
Androgens will create characteristics of the opposite gender. They are male hormones and will cause the body to develop male characteristics; however they will not cause the reversal of all feminine features.
At Leeds Gender Identity Service we provide regular hormone talks for those people who are currently attending the service. If you wish to partake in this group please contact the service for further details. Individuals should be aware that this group is provided to give information regarding hormones and will not automatically ensure that you will receive hormone treatment. Individuals who wish to pursue hormone treatment must speak with their lead professional regarding the referral process, criteria and timescales for this treatment.
At the Leeds Gender Identity Service we do have students and health care professionals who attend to gain experience and knowledge about the service.
Unfortunately we are limited as to how many health care professionals can access the service due to capacity and time available.
We already have an established relationship with the West and North Yorkshire universities which include Leeds University, Leeds Metropolitan University and York St John’s University. We have allocated placements each year for occupational therapy students, nursing students and medical students.
If you are part of a healthcare professional body and would like the opportunity to spend a day with the service we would ask that your course tutor or professional manager write to our service outlining the reasons for you visit and the benefits you will gain. In addition we would require your contact details so that we can respond to you in due course. Please note we will try to accommodate day visits where appropriate however this may not always be possible.