Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital Gender Clinic and Statewide Service

All societies and cultures have expectations and rules about gender expression and roles. Young people who have a different understanding of their own gender can really struggle with not meeting these expectations and rules. Gender dysphoria is the distress associated with a mismatch between a person’s internal gender identity and the gender they were assigned at birth.

The Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital Gender Clinic and Statewide Service aims to help young people and their families reduce any distress they are experiencing and strengthen their coping mechanisms. We aim to understand the obstacles standing between young people and the development of a settled and confident gender identity. The team consists of:
• mental health professionals specialising in gender assessment and support, including child and adolescent psychiatrists, psychologists, clinical nurses, social workers and occupational therapists.
• paediatric endocrinologists (specialists in hormones)
• Speech pathologists (with expertise in language, communication and voice).

The clinic provides comprehensive assessment of gender dysphoria and, if needed, provides medical treatments including puberty suppression and support for families who choose to apply to the family court for gender-affirming hormone treatment.

We work closely with young people, their families and their broader support systems (e.g. school, local CYMHS and other health providers or counsellors) to maximise each young person’s strengths and work towards optimum social emotional wellbeing and development. Referrals to local community mental health support can also be made when needed.

The Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital Gender Clinic and Statewide Service is a partnership between Children’s Health Queensland’s Child and Youth Mental Health Service and the Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital’s Department of Endocrine.

Who can access this service?

To access this service children must be:

  • aged under 18 years
  • reside in Queensland
  • seeking support with their gender identity
  • referred by your local doctor/general practitioner.

Catchment area

This service is available to children living in Queensland, northern New South Wales.

Do I need a referral?

You will need a formal referral to access this service.

How do I get a referral?

Referrals are accepted from:

  • your local doctor – General Practitioners, 12 month or indefinite referral
  • a medical doctor or specialist
  • via the Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital Specialist referral form.

Other referral information

You will be contacted when the referral is received and given an idea of current waiting time. Information about the first appointment and what to bring will be posted to you.

Information for health professionals

While gender dysphoria is not a psychiatric diagnosis it is associated with significant levels of psychological distress. Australian teenagers who identify as gender diverse are four times more likely to experience depression (41 per cent compared to 12 per cent). Approximately 45 per cent will report a diagnosis of an anxiety disorder, 70 per cent have self-harmed and 81 per cent report thoughts of suicide (Blues to Rainbows, La Trobe University 2014).

The gender clinic does not have the capacity to be the primary mental health provider to young people and their families but will work collaboratively with existing providers and/or make referrals to local community mental health supports when needed.

Referral instructions

Referrals can be made by:

  • general practitioners, 12 month or indefinite referral
  • a medical doctor or specialist (note if referral is less than 3 months they may not be seen in this timeframe and a second referral or GP referral may be required)
  • via the Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital Specialist referral form.

Our team

A/Statewide Coordinator

Olivia Donaghy

Meet the gender clinic team

This service is available at

Medical (3c)
Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital

Level 3
501 Stanley Street
South Brisbane
QLD 4101
View map

Contact details

t: 07 3069 7377
f: 07 3310 9498
e: LCCHgender@health.qld.gov.au

Existing patients

Medical enquiry: 07 3068 1111 and ask for endocrinology registrar from Monday to Friday, 8.30am-5pm. If you’re calling outside of these hours, please ask for the paediatric registrar.

Operating hours

Wednesday to Friday, 8.30am-5pm.

Related services

Endocrinology

Resources

Blog – Gender dysphoria in children and adolescents is not a phase
Gender clinic and statewide service video
Gender dysphoria fact sheet
Meet the gender clinic team