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Finally the voice of a trans person was heard at the hearing, after 10 weeks of testimony and in the final days. Patient A was 12 when he was seen by Dr Webberley and is now 17.

On behalf of Dr Webberley, Ian Stern QC finished presenting evidence for their case by reading a compelling summary of the evidence of Patient A and Patient A’s mother, Mrs A. Both had attended the hearing while in private session, in order to protect their anonymity. It was agreed by the Tribunal and the GMC that a summary of their evidence could be read into the public record.

We have previously heard during the hearing that Patient A was initially assessed by GIDS and approved for puberty blockers at age 11. He then wanted to start puberty with testosterone at age 12 but NHS protocols did not allow for this and they approached Dr Webberley for care.

Mrs A confirmed she had met Dr Webberley on two occasions and that she had met Professor Butler on five occasions. Mrs A met Dr Webberley after a recommendation from Susie Green of Mermaids. Mrs A’s recollection of the first meeting with Dr Webberley was that it was over an hour and that Dr Webberley sent on further information by email later.

Mrs A said before meeting with Dr Webberley she sent on Patient A’s entire history which recounted that he didn’t want to go to school as a boy, and that even at two and a half he would say he was a boy and would not allow people to refer to him as she.

 

 

Mrs A recalled a typical cross gender identity from a very young age. Patient A said he didn’t want to be alive if he could not get Testosterone. Mrs A says she sought Doctors in Hamburg & contacted their family GP Dr Young to try and access treatment for her son. Mrs A confirmed that the Leeds clinic knew of Patient A’s acute distress & she recalled speaking to a counsellor there who said he would speak to Prof Butler. Mrs A said Paitent A was “ecstatic” when Prof Butler told him he could be on a clinical trial to obtain Testosterone and when he became aware this would not happen that it became “a case of life or death”. Mrs A felt that if she couldn’t get Testosterone for her son that she would lose him to suicide. Mrs A said Patient A told her that he didn’t want to be alive if he couldn’t get Testosterone.

 

 

When asked by the tribunal what support was offered to Patient A at that time, Mrs A explained that the counsellor was aware of the distress that Patient A was in yet they were only offered a monthly counselling appointment. She stated that when her son began Testosterone he went from suicidal to confident and happy, made friends and spoke of career plans for the future.

 

 

Mrs A described how they would measure out the Testogel with a ruler and a sharpie and after time he became able to do this by himself. Mrs A mentioned that her son had never previously smiled in photos but after Testosterone he did. Mrs A made the observation that his life was not like this before he started Testosterone and that at one point he spoke about self mutilation and couldn’t face undressing himself.

 

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Patient A said that when he met Dr Webberley in the first consultation he recalled feeling as if finally someone cared about his situation for the first time. Dr Webberley put him at ease and gave him lots of information which they went through point by point. He felt Dr Webberley was always there to answer his questions.

 

 

Patient A told the tribunal that he knew if he got blockers he wouldn’t need chest surgery, and that he just wanted a normal puberty with his friends. Patient A added that he wanted to avoid having top surgery as he was worried that every time he took his top off people would see his scars and know he is trans.

 

 

He said that before he had wanted to end it all as it was a struggle for him to go to school with students asking if he was boy or girl.When asked by the tribunal how he would have fared with a system like that of Dr Kierans’ KOI, Patient A said he wouldn’t have thrived with the KOI approach of Northern Ireland. He recalled attending six of seven sessions at Tavi before Prof Butler saw him. He described feeling uncomfortable with the questions he was asked but felt he had to answer them to get treatment.

 

The testimony of Patient A and Mrs A concludes the defence case, final summation arguments will be made on Monday and Tuesday.