Parents can give consent for minor children to take puberty blockers

(Photo: Unsplash/Sandy Millar)

The High Court has ruled that parents can give consent to puberty blockers on behalf of their minor children. 

The ruling appears to partly reverse the judgment in the high profile case of Keira Bell last December, in which the High Court said that minors were unlikely to be able to give informed consent to puberty blockers. 

December's ruling had also required that gender identity services only prescribe puberty blockers to minors after acquiring approval from the courts. 

But on Friday, High Court Judge Nathalie Lieven ruled that parents have the right to consent to treatment on their child's behalf. 

The judgment was delivered after a couple contested the Bell verdict and argued that they should be allowed to give consent for their child to receive puberty blockers without having to go through the courts. 

Puberty blockers are controversial because of concerns about possibly irreversible effects on young people. A recent study found that they stunt bone growth in young people.