Now Reading
Serbia is Mecca for trans surgery

Serbia is Mecca for trans surgery

Serbia has become a Mecca for gender reassignment surgery with the help of subsidies from the country’s national health insurance.

According to the Belgrade Center for Genital Reconstructive Surgery, nearly 100 foreigners and Serbs have undergone the procedure in the past year, reported the New York Times.

Transgender people are attracted to Serbia because of the low cost of the surgery, while others from nearby countries such as Austria, Bulgaria and Greece travel to the Eastern European nation because of stigma at home.

Even Cher’s son Chaz Bono has said he wants to have the surgery in Belgrade, where the price tag is $10,000 for foreigners, compared with $50,000 or more at some clinics in the US.

Serbian trans activist Cristian, told the NY Times: ‘It is surprising that a conservative, patriarchal country is becoming a center for sex change operations, but social attitudes are slowly shifting.’

The shift in attitude in the country can also be seen in its increasing acceptance of LGBT rights, with the capital city’s gay pride march due to go ahead in September, despite being banned last year.

Serbian movie The Parade, a rom-com about a gay couple struggling to organize a pride event in the Belgrade, was also a surprise hit this year.

The European Parliament has urged Serbia to improve its gay rights record in order to join the EU in the future.