Hospital staff across England are asking patients if they plan to undergo ‘sex-swap’ surgery, following the introduction of a new computer system.
London’s King’s College Hospital and Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital have been using the EPIC system for around two months, which requires medics to complete a “sexual orientation and gender identity form” as part of each patient’s Electronic Patient Record.
The form asks for a patient’s preferred pronouns and an inventory of which reproductive organs were “present at birth”, and those which may have been “enhanced or constructed” due to ‘sex-swap’ procedures.
Speaking to The Daily Telegraph, one doctor branded the organ inventory “bizarre” and “nonsensical”.
Another staff member explained that the form provides default answers to some sections, where patients are “automatically cisgender unless they are classed as trans”.
They added: “The issue is that it is integrated into a multi-million pound electronic patient record system on the NHS but people don’t know about it.”
In October, the Government promised to remind the General Medical Council of the “importance of the use of correct language”, after it faced a backlash for removing female-specific words from its maternity and menopause policies.
Responding to a question in the House of Lords, health minister Lord Markham promised to convey “the clear feelings of all of us in the House today about women who are women and mothers, and men who are male and fathers”.
Although he noted that the regulator for UK doctors is independent from the Government and responsible for its own staff guidance, he said he “will be very clear on medical issues and the belief of all of us here in this House”.