Changes to Trans Health Care

On November 6, 2015, the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care announced that there will be a change to the regulation on who can assess and refer trans clients for gender-affirming surgery (GAS). Until now, only the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) could provide assessments and approvals for OHIP-covered surgeries. With a small staff and increasing numbers of trans people accessing medical transition services, the wait list has grown to 1300+ clients at CAMH and the time for a first appointment has reached several years. The new regulation will allow a broader range of regulated and experienced healthcare professionals to provide these referrals. It is unknown which regulated professionals will be able to provide these services, but it is anticipated that this shift will enable primary health providers and social workers/therapists to do so with the appropriate credentials and training (in addition to psychiatrists and psychologists). 

Resources: 
This announcement is posted on the Service Ontario Government Registry website. The public can submit comments for 45 days: 
  • Click here to learn more.
  • CAMH's Gender Identity Clinic website.
  • The World Professional Association of Transgender Health
  • Standards document is the recognized reference document for trans care.
  • Sherbourne Health Centre's guidelines for trans care.
About OASW
 
OASW is the voice of social work in Ontario. It is a voluntary, provincial, non-profit association representing approximately 5,200 social workers. All practicing members have a university degree in social work at the bachelor's, master's or doctoral level. OASW works actively to speak on behalf of social workers and advocate for the improvement of social policies and programs directly affecting social work practice and client groups served.