Tasmanian Liberal Health Minister calls for gender clinic review

Tasmanian Liberal government Health Minister and Attorney General, Guy Barnett, has raised the need for a national inquiry into youth gender clinics. He has written to the Federal government to flag the request, stating evidence from all states would be required for a comprehensive review.

Tasmania’s Health Minister, Mr Barnett, weighed in on the gender clinic issue in response to the feminist group Women Speak Tasmania, which had written to him and other MPs urging an independent inquiry into paediatric gender medicine on the island and citing the example of the Cass review of health services for gender-distressed youth.

In his email to the group on Thursday, Mr Barnett said it was “highly important” that gender services for children and adolescents have “rigorous patient safety and clinical governance measures in place”.

“As such and given the Cass review was undertaken at a national level in the UK, it is preferable that a review of public gender services [in Australia] be undertaken by the Commonwealth [being the federal government],” he said.

“This will allow consideration of all available evidence from across the country, to ensure these services are best-practice, evidence-based, and that patient safety and wellbeing is paramount.”

Mr Barnett said he had written to Australia’s federal Health Minister, Mr Butler, “requesting his consideration of these matters”. GCN (Gender Clinic News) has sought comment from Mr Butler.

This is the only sensible and credible way forward in Australia. The comprehensive Cass Review has seen the UK cease experimental “affirmation” practices in the UK. Nordic countries and even some US States and Portugal have walked back from puberty blockers and cross sex hormones for minors.

Why wouldn’t governments want to ensure best practices are allowed under law for the safeguarding of children? Why wouldn’t governments want to give medical practitioners the ability to follow evidence-based science? Why are so many politicians standing in the way of conducting such an inquiry? Why don’t they have the best interests of children at heart?