Sunday, May 25, 2008

12yo sex change case would have been 'properly assessed': AMA

The head of the Australian Medical Association (AMA) says sex change cases need to be assessed by looking at the person's ability to make a decision.

Dr Rosanna Capolingua's comments come after news a Family Court judge has allowed a 12-year-old girl, who wants to become a boy, to start hormone treatment in preparation for a sex change operation.

Her mother made the application on her behalf, saying her daughter has thought of herself as a boy from a very young age, but the child's father has objected.

The court ruled the hormone treatment was in the girl's best interests, and has allowed her to apply for a new birth certificate, passport and Medicare card in a boy's name.

Dr Capolingua says children and young people are assessed extensively before being allowed to make serious medical decisions.

"There is very careful consideration around the understanding, competency and maturity of the child, and therefore the child's ability to take part in the decision-making process," she said.

She says the maturity level of a child is what needs to be assessed.

"It is a case-by-case instance. Maturity, intellectual ability, understanding, competency, are things that doctors assess very carefully when they are deciding whether or not a child can be engaged in as part of a decision making process with regards their health," she said.


Latest Posts

Latest Comments