Page last updated at 10:59 GMT, Tuesday, 12 May 2009 11:59 UK

Transsexual on hunger strike

Debbie Davies
Ms Davies said she knew she was different from an early age

A transsexual from Nottinghamshire has warned she will end her life if she is refused hormone treatment on the NHS.

Debbie Davies, from Rainworth, is seven days into a hunger strike, and said she cannot afford to fund her treatment.

Ms Davies, who was born as Richard in 1966, has been living as a woman for the past 18 months.

Nottinghamshire County PCT has urged Debbie to stop the hunger strike and is currently reviewing its policy for patients who want to change gender.

Ms Davies wants a full surgical sex change but said she cannot afford to fund it privately.

We are sorry and concerned to hear Debbie is on hunger strike
Amanda Sullivan, Nottinghamshire County PCT

"It is the only way I can get the message across to the PCT about how important this is to me," she said.

"By no means do I want to end my life - it's not a suicide attempt. I don't have a life if I don't do this, if I don't become complete - there is no life to live.

"It just feels like the onset of a cold at the moment, I get tired easily, I would kill for steak and chips."

Ms Davies, who used to work as a welder as Richard but now works as an IT consultant, said she has bought her own hormone pills online in the past but can no longer afford to keep up the treatment.

She said she had been prescribed a one-off supply of the hormone pills by her GP but this is due to run out this month.

'Consistent approach'

"I've paid £25,000 out of my own money and I haven't got anything else - the health authority have some responsibility to support and treat me," she added.

Amanda Sullivan, of Nottinghamshire County PCT, said: "We are sorry and concerned to hear Debbie is on hunger strike.

"We have offered to meet with Debbie and we would prefer to resolve this through communication.

"We've asked for a review across the whole of the East Midlands.

"We have a body of clinical experts who are reviewing in detail the way in which we treat people who want gender reassignment - we are keen to have a consistent approach."

Ms Sullivan said the outcome of the review is expected by the end of the month.

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Debbie Davies said hormone treatment was "the most important thing in the world'"



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