New regulations restrict the prescribing and supply of puberty-suppressing hormones to children and young people under 18.

The Government has today introduced regulations to restrict the prescribing and supply of puberty-suppressing hormones, known as ‘puberty blockers’, to children and young people under 18 in England, Wales and Scotland.

The emergency ban will last from 3 June to 3 September. It will apply to prescriptions written by UK private prescribers and prescribers registered in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland.

During this period no new patients under 18 will be prescribed these medicines for the purposes of puberty suppression in those experiencing gender dysphoria/incongruence under the care of these prescribers.

The NHS stopped the routine prescription of puberty blocker treatments to under-18s following the Dr Cass Review into gender identity services.

In addition, the government has also introduced indefinite restrictions to the prescribing of these medicines within NHS primary care in England, in line with NHS guidelines.

The new arrangements apply to gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogues – medicines that consist of, or contain, buserelin, gonadorelin, goserelin, leuprorelin acetate, nafarelin, or triptorelin.

This action has been taken to address risks to patient safety.

Patients already established on these medicines by a UK prescriber for these purposes can continue to access them. They will also remain available for patients receiving the drugs for other uses, from a UK-registered prescriber.

Patients seeking more information should speak to their clinician.

Source: Department of Health and Social Care

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