Britain – Sex-change surgery could be the victim of multi-million pound NHS cuts…

Willow has raised the specter of National Health Insurance  programs ceasing to fund SRS should those of us working to depathologize it succeed in getting GID removed from the DSM.

I honestly do not see that as the problem.  The same forces trying to defund SRS are the same forces trying to defund abortion.  They label SRS as caving into the delusions of mentally ill people.

I am far more concerned with the transfer of wealth upwards and the institution of “austerity measures” on the poor as outlined in Naomi Klein’s Shock Doctrine.

We are seeing an elimination of the middle classes and polarization into two classes rich and poor where the rich have everything and the poor have nothing.  In this case it is all too easy for those who already have one foot in lumpen prole status to slip fully into that class below the statuses defined as rich/middle/working class.

The privatization of everything would mean that there would be no public health or publicly funded education.

We have long been in a class war.  The problem is that most working class people are to drugged on sports, religion, trinkets, sex and violence to recognize how exploited they are.

[2010-02-26 WiganToday]

Friday, 26th February 2010

NHS savings may affect couples

Couples waiting for IVF fertility treatment and patients hoping for sex-change surgery could be the victims of multi-million pound NHS cuts.

But Wigan health chiefs have sought to reassure patients that no job cut targets have been set.

It was revealed this week that trusts across Greater Manchester have been ordered to slash spending plans for the NHS by a massive £950m.

The need for savings is expected to affect “every aspect of health care”, bringing job cuts and changes to services.

It is understood that savings could be made through cuts in lifestyle services such as IVF, weight loss surgery and gender reassignment.

The “efficiency savings”, outlined in Greater Manchester’s Primary Care Trust board papers begin in April and must be made by 2014.

Bosses have been told to begin with a 30 per cent cut in management – prompting some PCTs to merge human resources, finance and other “backroom” services with neighbouring health trusts.

Ironically, Ashton, Leigh and Wigan PCT’s own chief executive, Peter Rowe, has been enlisted by the Government to identify areas where savings can be made across the country.

Regional health bosses have told Greater Manchester’s 10 primary care trusts – the organisations which fund all health care in their area – that they must save almost £1bn over the next four years.

But the Wigan PCT issued a statement today which was resolutely upbeat, and suggested that much of the savings could be made relatively painlessly by good housekeeping.

A spokesman said: “We have no definite picture of what will happen when the current three-year comprehensive spending review ends in March 2011. We are confident there will be no reduction in the NHS budget.”

Full statement in today’s (Friday) Wigan Evening Post …

2 Responses to “Britain – Sex-change surgery could be the victim of multi-million pound NHS cuts…”

  1. Caroline Says:

    decades ago I was told in no uncertain terms that help was unavailable and believed that. now that I have entered the system almost by accident I find the service under threat so they may have been right all along!

  2. Willow Arune Says:

    Firstly, opinions as to why such actions are taken are only opinions. But as one who has fought the battle, I am deeply concerned.

    Every province in Canada sets its own SRS “rules”. In BC, we had one premier who was our “George W”. He terminated any SRS funding and also (early in the plague) HIV prescriptions. We had to fight to reinstate SRS funding and the major weapon was that it was necessary due to a medical condition. We had tons of help from the then Vancouver Clinic and the Clarke. That position on SRS was reversed. In Ontario, once again with a change in government, funding was dropped then, after a legal action based on the medical need, reinstated.

    Simply put, we are very low on the totem pole of needs – at least, according to those who can change these things. We have a major PR issue, not made any easier by the actions of some that make us look…silly. When the pie gets cut, if that pie is not big enough procedures get axed. We live very close to the cutting edge.

    One of the main proponents of SRS funding through state plans has been Ray Blanchard, the demon himself. He has argued in favour of funding time and time again, in each of the provinces. He and the wicked Clarke also led the battle to allow us to change our birth certificates in each province. (see

    As above, in every case where we have won the *right* to SRS funding, the key ingredient has been the medical justification. Take away DSM and that disappears. What’s left? It then becomes cosmetic only and thus is not covered at all, anything from therapy (which some agree with and others not) to hormone treatment to SRS.

    With the economic crisis, each province is looking for any excuse to cut costs in any way. Schools closing, roads not being repaired, hospitals told to cut budgets (Yeah, but we can spend billions on the Olympics, I know). Any marginal procedure will be hacked off from funding, given any excuse. And, as the article from the UK shows, we can be amongst the first to go. Give a government an excuse to stop funding and they will.

    This is practical applied politics. The majority out there have a strange view of TS and thus we have little public support. We don’t have the numbers and in many cases lack the reputation to garner support. The only arrow in our quiver is the medical necessity. What holds true for us also holds true for the UK, Sweden and other countries in Europe. Now France shall be interesting. My own opinion is that they too have a budget crunch. Nice words now, but after the EU gets finished paying off for Greece, the knives will be out. Even worse there as the former administrator had no use for SRS at all. Cuba is a somewhat special case.

    Our baby, your bathwater.

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