Sex-change patient complains of lack of a one-stop service A transsexual is considering lodging a complaint against the Hospital Authority over the lack of one-stop public services. Joanne, who was born male and is seeking a sex-change operation, said she was deeply upset with the services offered by a public hospital. 'I have to seek consultation from the medical social worker, psychiatrist, psychologist and many others. There are so many that I lose count. It is really inconvenient. I am thinking about filing a complaint about this,' she said, referring to the various departments she must visit. 'Doctors do not know how to handle my case as they do not have the experience.' One doctor hinted that he could not do much for her and suggested she stop making appointments if she found them unhelpful. 'But I have to keep going as I want them to give me a report certifying that I am fit mentally and physically to undergo sex-change surgery,' Joanne said. 'Sadly, it seems all these medical appointments are getting me nowhere.' Joanne, who is taking hormones to make her body more feminine, started seeing specialists at Queen Mary Hospital's sex clinic in December 2004, but the one-stop service closed in March 2005. 'Doctors there were very experienced as they had dealt with many patients who wanted to undergo a sex change before,' she said. 'But it took about one or two years for them to make an assessment.' Former head of the sex clinic and gender identification team Ng Mun-lun agreed. 'It is indeed very troublesome for those who want to change their gender as they have to seek consultation from different departments and the doctors lack experience,' said Professor Ng, who now runs a private psycho-sexual clinic under the University of Hong Kong. Professor Ng said the sex clinic had taken one to two years to assess whether a patient was mentally and physically fit for a sex-change operation, with the specialists working closely together. 'But it will take longer under the present public system as the doctors ... usually do not work together. It can be very torturous for the patients,' he said. Established in 1979, the Queen Mary clinic was the city's first centre to provide sex therapy to Chinese patients but it was forced to close because of a lack of resources. The authority said public hospitals would continue to offer services and patients who opted for a sex-change operation would be referred to Ruttonjee and Tang Shiu Kin hospitals. Figures show five people underwent sex-change operations at public hospitals between January 2004 and June last year.