Doctor suspended for two months for putting transgender people 'at risk'

Helen Webberley, founder of the GenderGP website

A doctor who ran an online clinic for transgender patients has been suspended from practising for two months.

Helen Webberley, founder of the GenderGP website, was found to have committed serious misconduct by a Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service panel.

The tribunal, which started to hear evidence in July last year, found she had not provided proper follow-up care to two patients, aged 12 and 17, who were prescribed testosterone, and failed an 11-year-old patient by omitting to discuss risks to fertility before prescribing GnHRa, or puberty blockers.

On Thursday (30 June) the panel, chaired by Angus Macpherson, found Dr Webberley should be suspended for two months

He said: "The period of suspension which the tribunal considers it should impose is that period which allows Dr Webberley the opportunity to demonstrate her level of insight into this aspect of the tribunal's finding of impairment.

"The tribunal has determined, therefore, to suspend Dr Webberley's registration for a period of two months.

"The tribunal considered that this period will allow Dr Webberley sufficient time to demonstrate whether she has the necessary insight into the concerns identified by this tribunal and that she has remediated her shortcomings.

"It is also the shortest practical period to make arrangements for a review hearing to take place."

Dr Webberley, from Abergavenny in Monmouthshire, was convicted in 2018 of running an independent medical agency without being registered.

The tribunal found her fitness to practise was impaired by reason of her conviction, her misconduct and on wider public interest grounds.

'Unwarranted risk of harm'

In its findings, the panel said the failure to provide adequate follow-up care put two patients, transitioning from female to male, at "unwarranted risk of harm".

It said: "In the tribunal's view an informed member of the public would be surprised if a finding of impairment on public interest grounds were not made in those circumstances.

"It therefore finds that Dr Webberley's fitness to practise is impaired on wider public interest grounds."

Earlier this year, the panel found more than 30 allegations brought by the General Medical Council against the doctor were proved.

However, the panel said the doctor was competent to provide treatment to transgender people and found 83 allegations not proved.

Dr Webberley's husband, Dr Michael Webberley, who ran GenderGP with her, was struck off earlier this year after a tribunal found he failed to provide good clinical care to 24 patients and put patients at risk of serious harm.