The London Boroughs of Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham and the Health Innovation Network are proud to launch south London’s first specialist transsexual health clinic in partnership with King’s College Hospital and CliniQ. The new clinic takes a holistic approach to delivering an informed, respectful and dedicated local service to a group who face serious barriers to care. Services available include hormone treatment, contraception, counselling, support for sexual assault and hate crimes, housing advice and access to the PrEP Impact Trial (PrEP is a medication that prevents HIV transmission).
Michael Brady, LGBT+ Health adviser to NHS England and King’s Consultant in Sexual Health and HIV, said “Every letter in ‘LGBT’ has experience of health inequalities …and trans people are disproportionately disadvantaged. Every trans individual I’ve spoken to has had a bad experience in accessing [health] care.” The launch of this service forms part of LSL’s local response to start to address some of the inequalities that the trans community faces.
Word from the Cabinet
Cllr Ed Davie, Lambeth Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care, said: “I’m thrilled and proud that Lambeth has funded this clinic. From black mental health to leading the Do It London HIV campaign, Lambeth Council has a proud record of working with minority communities and I’m very pleased this clinic builds on this. I’m certain it will make a positive difference, increase learning and awareness, both for health professionals and for Trans and non-binary people themselves. Closing the health inequalities gap is pivotal to what we do as a council.”
Since the end of April, the weekly clinic has seen over 50 trans and non-binary patients accessing services and welcoming the service:
- Octavian, an outreach worker and CliniQ service user, said. “I’m excited, not surprised, that South London is where this is happening. Coming to CliniQ, I don’t have to explain all about my body before I get help. Trans health should be built in to training for all doctors.”
- Paula, founder of Croydon Pride said: “There are mental health issues specifically related to transitioning – until now local services didn’t know if counselling was available from someone who’d understand.”
Michelle Ross, founder of CliniQ was determined to start a holistic Trans sexual health clinic after years of seeing the impact of the lack of provision for trans and non-binary people. “Trans people feel erasure of identity, being defined by questions like ‘Who do you have sex with?’ and ‘What’s your real name?’ Seven years ago there was no inclusion – no cervical cancer screening for men who have a cervix, for example. We wanted a clinic that offers trans people images they can identify with, holistic advice like how you can combine hormone treatment with PReP, and with an understanding that trans people have sex! The three south London boroughs have shown real leadership in supporting this.”
For more information
- Walk-in clinic opens every Tuesday from 4pm – 7pm at the Caldecot Centre at King’s College Hospital, or appointments can be booked.
- For more about CliniQ see their information pages
- The new service is funded by the London Boroughs of Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham and the Health Innovation Network (South London).