‘I Only Treat Real Women’ – Europe’s Deepening Focus On Trans Healthcare
A 26-year-old transgender woman, accompanied by her boyfriend, recently went to a gynecological appointment at a clinic in the south-west of France.
However, after minutes of waiting, the secretary of gynecologist Victor Acharian told her the doctor had refused to see her.
Talking to Euronews, Acharian admitted he didn’t have the training or knowledge to treat trans patients. “I told her … I can refer you to services that can take better care of you.”
But things eventually went south, the gynecologist added. The young woman reportedly shouted “You’re transphobic!” as she left the consulting room.
She reacted violently to the refusal and insulted his secretary, the gynecologist said. According to the French press, she was reported to be in a ‘black hole’ and still in ‘shock’.
Following the incident, the trans woman’s partner left a comment on the clinic’s Google reviews complaining about what had happened.
Medical Professionals Need Wider Knowledge On Trans Healthcare
Acharian replied with a message addressed to a “gentleman”, claiming he treated “real women”. Although he admits he lashed out with the online comments, he said his reasoning is justified.
“I have expressed my regrets on several occasions,” the French doctor added, while highlighting a pressing problem for medical professionals.
Although gynecology is still about providing specialised care for women, the term isn’t that simple anymore. Doctors have raised concerns over a lack of knowledge harming treatments.
Now, the challenge for medicine is to find new ways of addressing changing social norms as the sexual minority population is still under-represented in medical curricula.
Nonetheless, the incident has triggered a raging controversy in France, with transgender rights organisations across Europe coming to the patient’s defence.
“It is brutal to deny the right to health,” said Mar Cambrolle, president of the Trans Platform Federation in Spain, according to Euronews.