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Sex change ops under review in Sweden

TT/The Local · 30 Jul 2009, 10:19

Published: 30 Jul 2009 10:19 GMT+02:00

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Organizations representing gay, bisexual and transsexual people have long argued that often inconsistent healthcare services do not cater fully to their needs.

Criticism has centred on issues such as the long delays in the sex reassignment process with variations of up to several years depending on locality.

There are also significant differences in price for various operations and procedures among the county health authorities and inconsistencies in how much the transsexuals themselves have to contribute.

"The hope is that we shall offer healthcare for this group which is of high quality and which is consistent across the country, and that it should improve the quality of life for transsexual people," Håkan Ceder at the board said to Sveriges Radio (SR).

According to legislation passed in 1972, to undergo a sex change operation a person must be over 18-years-old, a Swedish citizen, be sterilized and unmarried.

In order to establish a person's gender a psychiatric examination must have been completed before an application can be submitted to the Health and Welfare Board's legal council for confirmation.

Following the confirmation of a new gender the transsexual person is issued with a new personal identification number (personnummer) and are then able to elect to undergo sex reassignment surgery.

The number of people applying for sex reassignment surgery is increasing.

Story continues below…

For thirty years it averaged at about 12-15 people per year until 2003, when it climbed to around 25 per year, according to the Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights (RFSL).

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

11:26 July 30, 2009 by Hermlover
There are actually FAR more than 25 people per year seeking sex reassignment in Sweden. As usual the medical establishment has a vested interest in making certain 'conditions' appear rare so as not to alarm the general population. There are too many things wrong with the Swedish system to even begin here, but begin I will. WHY is involuntary sterilization mandatory? Is transsexualism something that could be genetic and so must be abolished? How many other groups in society are told they must be sterilized to get medical treatment. How would lesbians and gays feel if that was a condition of their acceptance in society? Something to ponder....
11:59 July 30, 2009 by byke
An interesting article,

What defines a persons sex? DNA structure? Hormonal structure?

or is it just as superficial as a set of boobs and a deposit hole?

I wonder if any male was "unlucky" - (if he morally didnt agree with transgenders) to come across a man disguised as a women (snipped n boobed) and was then say to enter a relationship with such person while unaware of "its" previous history.

Could that male that falsely enters into a relationship with a transgendered sue the state for fraud?

As if the state offers new sexual identities to males who have surgery.

Are they not aiding and abetting fraud?

I am by no means unsympathetic to these issues, however I really am starting to question if it really as simple as adding a hole and boobs and pop a few pills to become a chick ?
12:29 July 30, 2009 by Nemesis
For facts on what transsexualism really is take a look at this link, which tells what causes transsexualism.


It is wrongly classed as a mental disorder. Transsexualism starts in the womb, due to pre-natal neuro developmental going in the wrong direction in the brain.

Transsexual people quite often end up in clinics as children, because of this, contrary to the sexual nonsense that is commonly in the media and porn magazines.

As a previous poster has stated, why is there a requirement for sterilisation? The only reason for that is because the psychiatrists are in full knowledge, it is genetic and not psychiatrict.

Regarding Byke's statements. That is complete and utter bigotry. It is straight out of press release's posted by the catholic church in the last 2 months. The origins of Byke's comments are,

12:52 July 30, 2009 by byke
@ Nemesis

I am by no means a bigot, nor a religious person.

If you cant accept the simplest of questions regarding science and definition of human sexuality then you obviously have no value in commenting on this.

By the way, go and buy a dictionary and learn what the word Bigotry means before spewing such false hatred statements.
13:06 July 30, 2009 by Brenda Lana Smith R Af D
While equal human rights of gender-variant folk who prefer nor or are unable to avail themselves genital reassignment surgery who present as opposite to their registered at birth gender need be fully enshrined in law. Unless Sweden wants rubber stamp the like of Britain' dog's breakfast Gender Recognition Act 2004-that affords questionable validity within and none outside Britain. Particularly not British Overseas Territories-to the chagrin this pragmatic 76-year-old post-operative male-to-female transsexual Bermudian exile who has long advocated that to be legally recognised as opposite to one's registered at birth gender it is lawyerly practical and culturally more digestible that such candidates be medically certified no longer biologically reproductive. Ergo, Sweden, stick with your present legislation...
13:15 July 30, 2009 by byke
So lets say I feel like I am a young person inside a body that I conceder looks older than I feel.

So I go off and get some cosmetic surgery, and now look 20 years younger.

Can I now change my original date of birth to represent the true person who I feel I am ?

And be recognized by the state as a well hung, buff 24 year old.

Rather than a fat 44 year old that I may have been a few weeks previously?
13:37 July 30, 2009 by Nemesis

I have a very good dictionary. Your questions read as though they are designed to be offensive.

Transsexualism is nothing to do with sexuality. It starts pre-natally and children with transsexualism usually end up in clinics. Sexuality does not kick in until puberty and it is inappropiate to use sexuality references specifically for transsexualism.

If you do actually want to educate yourself then this is as good a starting point as any, http://ai.eecs.umich.edu/people/conway/TS/TS-III.html as is the link to the publication in Nature, in my previous message, which explains exactly what causes transsexualism.

This link will let you know just how diverse human development really is.

19:38 July 30, 2009 by I Love it when ...
thats sucks for the people wanting to get sex changes

doesn't the swedish board of health & welfare , have better things to do
20:28 July 30, 2009 by byke
@ Nemesis

"I have a very good dictionary"

I think what you are meaning to say is that you feel you have a good VOCABULARY LOL. I am not going to knit pick on words, but it appears evident that English is not your first language.

In regards to your links, AGAIN my original process of questions was to understand what defines a male from a scientific perspective and not that of the issues that "Tranys" are faced with. And should authorities allow personal identification information to be altered due to manipulation based generally on cosmetic surgery ?

If I bought what I thought was an Orange, and the shop sign said "Orange".

Then I expect an Orange, and not a kiwi disguised with the peel of an Orange.

(no matter what issues the Orange felt it was)

It would be illegal to sell a so called Orange in this sense as it would be considered fraudulent.
23:16 July 30, 2009 by Nemesis

The nature publication is science. Nature is one of the world's premier scientific journals. It does not print persepectives, only facts.

04:30 July 31, 2009 by Hedley
Nature is not "science" is journal that publish science, so anyone can rebate it (I can not rebate it, but science works so!).

However, transsexuals may feel more comfortable if they are do a REALLY RISKY OPERATION (ultra-expensive and with high risk of infection), and with careful postoperative controls.

Spend money in such operations could be less profitable that spend in ULTRA HIGH QUALITY PSYCHOLOGICAL SUPPORT (Oh! also needed to be operated).

That is not so easy that just put a couple of boobies and a magic hole!
08:47 July 31, 2009 by Nemesis
I have just noticed something very strange about this article.

The journalist who does not put there name to the article, quotes RFSL, a homosexual and transvestite organisation.

I have done a quick check and the appropiate organisation to have asked for a quote would have been the Swedish organisation foreningen benjamin. http://www.foreningenbenjamin.se/

Foreningen benjamin was the organisation that was the organisation consulted by Socialstyrelsen over proposed rule changes, not RFSL.

Some quick fact checking by the Local would have quickly uncovered that, particulary considering that foreningen benjamin is the primary contact for transsexual issues in Sweden. A basic google search can pop that up, instantly.

Maybe the journalist who wrote the article, could explain why they did not contact the group directly involved and instead contacted a group which tries to lump them in with transvestities?
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