According to a new report from The Telegraph has revealed that new guidance put out by National Health Services in the United Kingdom says that if a patient refuses to accept the care offered from a transgender medic, they could be guilty of discrimination. Health bosses have been issued a warning that patients do not have a right to be informed about the healthcare worker’s biological gender when being cared for.
However, transgender healthcare workers themselves have the right to refuse to treat patients if they feel uncomfortable, the NHS Confederation went on to say.
The report, which was published during the first weeks of June, was part of a partnership with an organization known as the LGBT Foundation. It states that there are limited circumstances that allow for a patient to request a same-sex staff member, one such example being what they refer to as an “intimate examination.”
The guidance then says that if a patient does request a worker to be a male or female when providing them with care, “the comfort of the staff member should be prioritized.”
It continues,“the patient has no right to be told that the person treating them is trans or non-binary,” going on to add: “It would likely be discriminatory for the patient to refuse to be treated or cared for by a trans person, unless clear and evidenced clinical harm may result to the patient.”
One item in the new guidance that seems to be catching a lot of attention is the section that says patients who are suffering from dementia “should still be challenged” if they happen to express any “discriminatory views” about transgender staff members, noting relatives with these views might get removed from the premises.
The advice reveals that medics who identify as non-binary are allowed to refuse a patient treatment saying, they “should not be forced to deliver care if this would cause undue distress or invalidate their lived experience of gender”.
Speaking on the new guidance put out by the NHS, Saffron Cordery, who currently serves as the deputy chief executive of NHS Providers said, “Trust leaders are committed to ensuring all their staff are treated with dignity and respect and the publication of the NHS’s first ever EDI plan is a welcome step towards that ambition.”
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