Reuters (UK)

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LONDON, Dec 22 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – England’s only youth gender clinic said on Tuesday it had sought leave to appeal a court ruling that has stopped its doctors from being able to prescribe puberty-blocking drugs to under-16s without a judge’s approval. The Tavistock clinic had been expected to challenge the Dec. 1 High Court ruling, which said under-16s were unlikely to be able to give informed consent to the drugs – fueling a global debate about the age at which a child can transition gender. Hours after the ruling, Britain’s National Health Service (NHS) said doctors would need court approval to prescribe puberty blockers, prompting the Tavistock & Portman NHS Foundation Trust’s clinic to halt new referrals for the drugs. That sparked relief from campaigners who argued that puberty blockers were being prescribed without enough research into their consequences, but alarmed the parents of children who had been about to start the treatment.

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