Hi! And welcome to our homepage. Transtukiverkosto (literally trans support network) is a group of people interested in working for the promotion of gender diversity in Finland. We are not an official organization nor an authority and we remain unaffiliated politically and economically. We are based in Turku but strive to upkeep a network of shared peer support and knowledge throughout the country.
Transitioning in Finland
To get a referral to one of the gatekeeping units (TAYS in Tampere or HYKS in Helsinki), make an appointment to a medical professional, and tell them you need a referral. Showing them this and this may help clarify your situation and your rights–while they might try and direct you to a mental health professional first, you’re entitled to get that referral from any doctor, and are not required to jump through any additional hoops.
Hearing back from TAYS or HYKS may take from a few weeks to even months. Calling may speed up the handling.
Trans Units and Examination
The process itself consists of several appointments to chart your health, social situation and life in general, and of a final consultation, where you’ll be diagnosed with F64.0 (“transsexualism”) (or F64.8; F64.9). Should you wish for it, at this point you’ll get a referral to the hormone clinic of TAYS/HYKS and for any corrective surgery you require, apart from genital surgery. For SRS, the second opinion of a psychiatrist at the other unit (at TAYS if you were researched in HYKS, and vice versa) in addition to the referral by your own unit’s psychiatrist. If you have a (Finnish) gendered social security number, you’re also able to change your legal gender (and your name, if you haven’t already) after the second opinion.
Once you’ve been diagnosed, you’re entitled to a reference for name change. Note that some people have also been able to get the reference during the examination period, or changed their name independently. Successfully changing your legal name without documentation tends to depend on the designated gender of the new name in relation to your legal gender marker. Gender-neutral names tend to get accepted. With gendered names one precedent is enough. Foreign names for non-native Finns likely aren’t scrutinised as carefully in terms of their gender assignment.
You’ll either be required to have your blood work done at your local healthcare unit or after your initial visit to the clinic. When your results are in and everything is in order, you’re officially ‘allowed’ to go on HRT. A check-up at six and twelve months (during your ‘Real Life Test’) is part of the process. The clinic will also provide you with a certificate required by law, proving you are infertile, in order to change your legal gender. (AK 2014)