Notice: Disruption to postal services in the United Kingdom
29th September 2022
Some patients may experience delays in receiving their prescriptions in the next couple of months, due to industrial action called by the UK’s Communication Workers Union. The CWU has called upon its members who collect, sort, and deliver parcels to go on strike on the following dates:
- Friday 30 September 2022 > Saturday 1 October 2022
- Thursday 13th October 2022
- Thursday 20th October 2022
- Tuesday 25th October 2022
- Monday 28th November 2022
Other strike dates may be announced.
Please note that GenderGP and our prescription partners will be functioning as normal, and that the circumstances of these strikes are outside of our control. We would recommend, where possible, trying to make plans in advance to minimise personal disruption.
We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause to our UK users.
Together We Will Provide World Leading Trans Healthcare With the Pharmacy Hub
In order to ensure our service users get access to the best standards of care, we work with pharmacists who are regulated in their country and who can ensure the medication they dispense is legitimate and safe. This is all achievable with use of our pharmacy hub.
The Pharmacy Hub section of our website aims to inform our pharmacy colleagues about our approach and provide any reassurance, should it be needed, about the role they can play in providing care to this population.
If you believe that trans patients should be able to access safe, effective, well-led, responsive care, and you would like to join our network of pharmacies to receive direct referrals from us, please leave us your details and become a trusted partner at The Pharmacy Hub.
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Sweden and Finland – The FAQs
Accessing prescriptions, Sweden and Finland. Updated 07/06/22
What does GenderGP do?
GenderGP is a health and wellbeing service for trans and non-binary people. We offer medical and therapy services to help people who wish to transition. If people want to take hormones to masculinise or feminise their bodies so that their bodies more closely match their gender identity, then we offer that medical service. Our doctors are able to prescribe medication for you to help with that hormone transition.
Who is affected?
At present, only patients receiving masculinising treatment are affected. We have been able to resolve the issues affecting patients receiving feminising treatment. GenderGP patients in Sweden and Finland who are receiving feminising treatment can now once again access our full service provision.
Please see this summary table regarding affected services:
*The Swedish Medical Products Agency has clarified that Swedish pharmacies cannot accept paper prescriptions for medications containing testosterone. However, we are able to send paper prescriptions to Sweden upon request for any patients that would like to take them to neighbouring countries for dispensing.
How do prescriptions work?
Doctors evaluate the patient and with you they make the best choices on what medication is the safest and most effective option. The prescription is then taken to a pharmacy who will dispense the medication that has been prescribed. You will have to arrange to pay for the medication and the costs are set by the pharmacy.
How can I get the medication that GenderGP doctors prescribe?
There are several ways that we can help you get your medication from our prescription:
- We can send your prescription to one of our trusted pharmacy partners and they will send you the medication in the post.
- We can send you a paper prescription in the post to an address you specify, for you to take to the pharmacy of your choice and they will dispense the medication.
- We can send a treatment summary to your doctor, advising what medication they should prescribe for them to prescribe for you.
- If you are on Testosterone, we can prescribe you Nebido and you can arrange for that to be injected every 12 weeks at a clinic where they are supportive of trans rights.
What is the problem?
Each country has their own rules about handling prescription medication, and unfortunately the rules have changed making it difficult for people receiving masculinising treatment who live in Sweden and Finland to receive medication through the post.
Sweden has confirmed that the dispensing and delivery of masculinising medication (those containing testosterone) from foreign pharmacies is still prohibited. Information as to why is available here.
What has changed?
According to the latest information from the Swedish Medical Products Agency (SMPA), the prescribing and postage of medical products to Sweden is not possible from countries outside the EEA (European Economic Area). It is still possible from inside the EEA but crucially, not for products containing doping substances such as testosterone.
This means that our Swedish patients receiving masculinising treatment can currently no longer have their medication sent via our European Pharmacy. The SMPA has since further clarified that Swedish pharmacies cannot dispense paper prescriptions for testosterone from other EEA countries.
Finland has adopted the same regulation as Sweden regarding the prescribing and posting of testosterone medication; however, Finnish pharmacies will still accept paper prescriptions. We have sought clarification from the Finnish government regarding the posting of medication, and are awaiting a formal response. However there is no way to guarantee the safe arrival of masculinising medication to Finland.
For Finnish patients requiring a paper prescription for masculinising medications (those containing testosterone) we can provide this as per our normal service and currently there appears to be no restrictions on where this can be dispensed.
How can I get my prescription?
We are able to send your paper prescription to anywhere that you want us to. Some examples that people have asked us to do are the following:
- Send the paper prescription to them at home and they have taken it to a pharmacy in their own country who is happy to dispense the medication.
- Send the paper prescription to them at home and they have taken it to a pharmacy in a neighbouring country where the rules are not against gender-affirming care.
- Have the medication sent to a collection address in a neighbouring country where the import rules allow prescription medication of any kind to be delivered.
- Have the medication sent to a friend’s address in a country where the medication is allowed to be delivered.
Are there any restrictions on travelling with medication?
If you are wishing to collect your medication from outside of Sweden, the following restrictions apply:
- You can travel to Sweden with 14 days supply of testosterone as long as you can show the medication is for your personal use.
- You can travel to Sweden with a 3 month supply of other medications as long as you can show the medication is for your personal use.
- We are able to provide you with a copy of your prescription (free) and a travelling with medication letter (£25) for these purposes.
What if I am on injections?
All of the medicines that we use can be given to you in different ways. For example testosterone injections can be swapped to testosterone gel, blocker injections can be given as a nasal spray. If you are finding it difficult to access your injection medication, then please ask the team to advise on what the other options are.
What are we doing to help?
We understand how important it is for you to be able to access gender-affirming care, and we also understand that there are sometimes people who want to make this difficult for you. At GenderGP, we are always working with authorities and leaders to give them the best and most unbiased information.
We have already had success in engaging with the Swedish Medical Products Agency to help our patients who require feminising medication to continue accessing their treatment. We further continue to work on behalf of our patients receiving masculinising treatment to help them to also have better access to their care.
We are also expanding our network of pharmacies and other partners who will help us achieve our mission – for you to be able to live your life more easily.
As we find more solutions and hear of other ways that people have negotiated these difficult times, we will keep you updated.
Where is my medication?
The EU pharmacy uses DPD to deliver your medication. You will receive tracking information from DPD once your medication has been dispatched, and it can take up to 10 working days for your medication to be delivered.
If it has been longer than 10 working days since you received your dispatch confirmation from DPD, please get in touch with Hogan’s Life Pharmacy directly via telephone on +353 1 873 2209, or via email at email@example.com
The medication on my prescription is wrong or needs to be changed
You can request a prescription via our Help Centre – just let us know the details on what needs to be changed and we can arrange this for you.
How long will I have to wait to receive my medication from your EU pharmacy?
It usually takes between 1-3 working days for us to process your request and for the chemist to dispense your medication after they receive our prescription. Once the EU chemist dispatches your medication, it can take up to 10 working days for your medication to be delivered. We strongly recommend that you submit your repeat prescription requests whenever you have four weeks’ supply remaining so that you don’t run out in between requests.
How long will I have to wait to receive my paper prescription?
It usually takes between 1-3 working days for us to process your request and up to 10 working days for delivery. We strongly recommend that you submit your repeat prescription requests whenever you have four weeks’ supply remaining so that you don’t run out in between requests.
I am having issues receiving my feminising medication, or getting my paper prescription filled. What can I do?
Paper Prescriptions, Sweden: For Swedish Patients requiring a paper prescription for feminising medication the latest information from the Swedish Medical Products agency is that paper prescriptions issued inside the EU and EEA can be dispensed by Swedish pharmacies.
If you are challenged on this by your pharmacy, you can refer to the SMPA information and advice here.
Medication Delivery, Sweden: For Swedish patients wanting to order feminising medication via GenderGP’s preferred EU pharmacy partner the latest information we have from the Swedish Medical Products agency is that we can send feminising medication via our normal delivery service.
If your package is delayed or there is an issue at customs, you can refer to the information issued by the SMPA here.
Paper Prescriptions, Finland: For Finnish Patients requiring a paper prescription for feminising and masculinising medication, the latest information is that paper prescriptions issued inside the EU and EEA can be dispensed. For further information please see here.
Medication Delivery, Finland: We have sought clarification from the Finnish government regarding the posting of medication, and are awaiting a formal response. However there is no way at present for GenderGP to guarantee the safe arrival of masculinising medication to Finland. We will update patients as soon as we have further information. For Finnish patients wanting to order feminising medication via GenderGP’s preferred EU pharmacy partner, the latest information we have is that we can send feminising medication via our normal delivery service.
How can I contact the chemist?
Our EU pharmacy partner, Hogan’s Life Pharmacy, can be contacted directly via telephone on +353 1 873 2209, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Why can’t I order more than what is written on the prescription?
There are certain regulations that have to be followed for a prescription to be valid and for pharmacies to be able to dispense it. One of these regulations stipulates that some medications can only be prescribed and dispensed in certain quantities. Our EU pharmacy partner can only dispense a 1 month supply of testosterone at a time. If you require a 2 or 3 month supply on one prescription, we are able to provide you with a paper prescription in the post as an alternative.
Common questions being asked by patients this week:
Can I pause my subscription?
If you wish to remain under our care, then you need to be subscribed to our service. The subscription covers the advice, support, blood test analysis and the prescriptions as appropriate. If you wish to leave and return later that is fine, but we do not ‘pause’ as such.
Can you continue to offer care (e.g. blood test analysis and advice) if I source my medication from elsewhere?
Subscribed patients can access advice, blood test analysis and prescriptions. You are welcome to use any of these services if you are a subscriber. While we always recommend you get your medication from a regulated pharmacy, we are still happy to help our subscribers with blood tests and advice on dosages etc even if they do not get their prescriptions from us.
Can you send medication to a PO box?
We do not send medication, we send prescriptions. If the pharmacy that you choose for us to send your prescription to is happy to dispense your medication to a PO Box for you to collect then that is fine. We can check with the pharmacy that they are happy to do that if you can provide proof that you own that PO Box address.
Can you send paper prescriptions to a PO box?
Yes, of course, we can send a paper prescription to any address you authorise us to.
Can you send medication to a non-residential address, such as a hotel or business?
Yes, see above.
Can you send my prescription directly to a pharmacy of my choice?
If we have an agreement with the pharmacy, we can send your prescription to them electronically. If not then we can send them a paper prescription.
I want to switch my testosterone preparation - how can I do this?
Just ask the team and they will switch your testosterone to an equivalent dosage.
How do I request my patient file for my doctor to review?
We can prepare a summary for your doctor which would include your Appraisal Pathway Form, your Information Gathering Session report and a summary of your current medication and latest blood tests. We can give your doctor a Treatment Summary to show the treatment we recommend.
Will this affect other countries now that the UK is no longer in the EU?
Transphobia and misinformation seems to know no bounds, but many countries are much more accepting of trans people’s rights. The community needs to stand together and be strong and fight for equality and human rights.
Do you have any friendly pharmacy recommendations I can take my paper prescription to?
The best place to get recommendations is from Internet forums where people are sharing their experiences and solutions.
Where can I book Sustanon injection training?
You can book Sustanon training sessions with a nurse via our Help Centre.
Can I get a refund on my subscription fees?
We can refund you for services that you haven’t been able to receive, but if you have had services during the time of your subscription, then these will be used to pay for the wages of those who have assisted you.
I started my Appraisal Pathway with you but no longer want to continue, can I get a refund?
People who have not moved on to subscription can have their set-up fee refunded. If, however, prescriptions and blood tests and advice and IGS evaluation have all taken place then the set-up fee is non-refundable.
Which clinical guidance do we follow?
Blog – Pharmacy
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