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ss nucleus - Easter 2010,  16 year-old to become Britain's youngest sex-change patient

16 year-old to become Britain's youngest sex-change patient

Bradley Cooper from East Yorkshire has become the youngest person to be accepted for an NHS sex-change operation in Britain. 'People might think I'm too young to make such a huge decision but I know my own mind and this is what I want.'

The trainee hairdresser, who calls himself 'Ria', has reportedly known for years that he was a woman, dressing as one since the age of twelve. He said that the operation would reconcile what he feels on the inside with who he is on the outside, finally bringing him 'peace of mind', particularly after years of bullying at school for being 'gay'. After researching sex-change operations himself and seeing his GP, Bradley was referred to a psychologist, who put him on a waiting list for the operation, satisfied that he knew his own mind and was eligible.

The decision has provoked outcry, particularly from the TaxPayer's Alliance, who say the NHS should spend money more wisely in the current economic climate, since the operation costs £10,000, but also from other sex change patients, who feel that Bradley is too young and impressionable to have the irreversible procedure.

(www.dailymail.co.uk2010; 24 January, www.telegraph.co.uk 2010; 24 January, www.newsoftheworld.co.uk 2010; 24 January)

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