What effects does it have?

What is it?

Changing your name, title, or gender on your NHS records.

How long does it last?

This is a permanent change but can be done more than once.

More information


Changing gender marker may affect whether you are invited to important medical screening tests that you still need. Read the whole of this page to ensure you still receive the correct tests.

You can change your name, title, or gender with the NHS at any time you like by telling your GP surgery. If your GP surgery is not happy to do this, you may wish to show your GP the General Medical Council guidance on this issue.

The NHS has multiple different systems that store details about patients. Most of these will be automatically updated when you tell your GP surgery.

Each system is different and able to hold different information about titles (or lack of title) and about the gender of the patient. In most NHS systems there are gender options for not only male and female, but often also a “not specified” marker which may be useful if you do not wish to have male or female recorded.

Usually, when you change your gender marker, you are also assigned a new NHS number. In England, information for GP surgeries on how to arrange for this is on the PCSE website (see the FAQs section).

Screening tests

During your life the NHS will invite you to a number of screening tests for common conditions. As the prevalence of these conditions is different for men and women, some tests only invite people who have “female” on their NHS record, and some tests only invite people who have “male” on their NHS record. This can mean people who have changed their gender marker can invited to the wrong tests for the body parts they have.

When you change your NHS gender marker, you should remember that you may not receive reminders for the tests you need, and may have to ask for them yourself. You can read about which screening tests you will need in this NHS booklet

There is further information available about screening tests and changing gender marker on the NHS Wales website and the NHS Brighton and Hove website.

Errors and omissions

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Page last updated: June 2019