The Health Secretary must close a loophole that allows puberty blocking drugs to be prescribed to children, a Peer has said.
In a letter to Matt Hancock MP, Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne expressed concern that such drugs can still be dispensed to people in the UK, if the prescription was written by a doctor in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland.
In particular, she highlighted the ongoing activities of GenderGP, an unlicensed gender clinic that continues to bypass regulatory safeguards and offer puberty blockers to children through its website, despite its owner being suspended by the General Medical Council (GMC).
Protect the vulnerable
Lady Nicholson asked the Health Secretary to reclassify the drugs being dispensed by GenderGP as “controlled substances within Schedules 1-3 under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations”.
— Emma Harriet Nicholson (@Baroness_Nichol) January 12, 2021
She explained that, should the drugs be reclassified, “no UK pharmacist would be able to lawfully dispense a prescription sourced in the current manner”.
She concluded: “I ask you to urgently commit to immediately closing this loophole, by the above means and any other method necessary to protect the welfare of vulnerable young people.”
GenderGP, now owned by a Hong Kong-based company, was founded by disgraced medic Helen Webberley.
She moved the business to Spain after she was suspended by the GMC in 2018 for operating the clinic without a licence.
I ask you to urgently commit to immediately closing this loophole
Despite the High Court ruling in December protecting children from being given puberty blocking drugs, the clinic continues to offer experimental ‘sex-swap’ drugs to vulnerable children online.
Initially, prescriptions written in the EEA/Switzerland were dispensed by Clear Chemist, one of GenderGP’s partners.
But following an investigation, the General Pharmaceutical Council found the pharmacy to have “serious system-wide failures in the governance and management of risk”.
GenderGP has been unable to continue using the pharmacy as its outlet.
Despite the controversy over Webberley’s practices, the BBC is set to publicise her work in its upcoming programme, ‘DIY Trans Teens’.
The BBC has removed the programme details from its website after initially saying it would be screened on 26 January.
A BBC spokesman said the programme “isn’t finished” but is still planned to go ahead.