American Family Children’s Hospital Welcomes New Gender & Sex Development Program

Dr. Walid Farhat, along with Drs. David Allen, Jennifer Rehm, Brittany Allen, and Kelsey Lewis have established the Gender and Sex Development Program at the American Family Children’s Hospital. This program will provide state-of-the-art, patient-centered health care and support to transgender, nonbinary, and gender diverse youth as well as children and adolescents who have variations of sex characteristics (VSCs, formerly referred to as Differences of Sex Development or DSDs). Reflecting a growing understanding that both sex and gender are neither binary nor fixed at birth, this program will strive to comprehensively address and center the needs of these patients.

Building on an existing collaboration between the Divisions of Pediatric Urology and Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes, the program will bring together the clinical care provided in the Pediatric and Adolescent Transgender Health (PATH) and Variations of Sex Characteristics (VarSeC) clinics, while fostering connections with established basic science research programs at UW. The inaugural multidisciplinary Gender and Sex Development clinic will occur later this year and take place every Monday. The program will expand existing clinical resources to include a dedicated pediatric health psychologist and a social worker. It will also create a community advisory board that will collaborate with both the clinical and research teams to provide socially and ethically responsible care to our patients.

This work will serve transgender, nonbinary, and gender diverse individuals as well as those with variations of sex characteristics with patient-centered care.