An NHS hospital art installation ‘in celebration of diversity’ has been branded a waste of money.
Critics have described an English hospital’s mural of the “Intersex-Inclusive Pride flag” as “virtue signalling”.
The ‘flag’ adorns a new 30-metre walkway at the Princess Royal University Hospital in Farnborough, which is part of King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.
Trust Chief Executive Professor Clive Kay defended the mural, claiming “the flag’s inclusion in the building’s design is a creative and visible way of communicating our commitment as an organisation to equality, diversity and inclusion, which is a vital part of the care we provide”.
But Dr Louise Irvine of the Clinical Advisory Group on Sex and Gender said the move could easily be “interpreted as the NHS supporting irreversible medical and surgical treatments for body modification”.
In March, the Health Secretary urged the NHS to assess its memberships with groups such as Stonewall, and only weeks later instructed the UK’s healthcare watchdog not to erase women by promoting gender neutral language.
Last year, it emerged that more than 20 NHS trusts collectively spent over £45,000 on installing and maintaining pedestrian crossings with the colours of the LGBT flag during the pandemic.