In June 2018, the World Health Organisation (WHO) announced that gender dysphoria would be classed as a sexual health condition, rather than a mental health disorder. Gender incongruence is defined as the mismatch an individual feels as a result of the discrepancy experienced between their gender identity and the gender they were assigned at birth. This condition may cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational or other important areas of functioning, in which case it is known as gender dysphoria. And it is estimated that approximately 0.5 to 1.3% of the UK population have some form of gender variance.
A new white paper from Healix Health Services, the corporate healthcare specialists considers the implications for employers looking to cover gender incongruence treatments in their corporate healthcare plans. Titled ‘Gender Incongruence’, the white paper looks at the definitions, mental health implications and treatments.
Historically, corporate private healthcare commonly excluded any treatment required for gender incongruence or gender dysphoria. However, this is changing, as progressive organisations, such as Facebook foster a culture of inclusion when it comes to gender identity.
“With referrals to gender identity clinics increasing by around 20% per year, in recent years, it is clear that employers need to understand the range of services available in the UK”,
“The adoption of a holistic approach to private healthcare provision means employers need to understand the evolving range of benefits available for physical, emotional, sexual and mental health conditions”, explained Keira Wallis, Head of Clinical Services at Healix Health Services and author of the white paper. “Once upon a time, healthcare cover would routinely exclude cosmetic and sexual conditions. However, the increasing social acceptance of gender dysphoria and gender incongruence coupled with a new understanding of how it affects employees facing these personal challenges, means employers may need to consider this as part of a more progressive corporate healthcare provision.
“Our new white paper helps employers and their professional advisors understand how they can offer support for gender dysphoria treatment, ranging from psychological support to treatments and surgery.
“As the corporate healthcare market shifts its approach to gender incongruence treatment, our white paper delivers an overview of the current landscape for brokers and clients in need of bespoke solutions.”