The British Medical Association (BMA) has distributed a leaflet on the correct way to address those expecting babies in a bid to avoid offending the transgender community.

In a guidance leaflet, the doctors' union is advising its members to drop the term "expectant mothers" in favour of "pregnant people" so as not to "upset intersex and transgender men," Metro reports.

The newspaper said the advice was set out in an internal document handed out to staff that listed common phrases that should not be used so as not to cause offence.

The leaflet, which was published last year reads: "This guide promotes good practice through the use of language that shows respect for and sensitivity towards everyone. The choice of appropriate words makes an important contribution towards the celebration of diversity."

It continues: "As well as avoiding offence, it is about treating each other with dignity and as equal members of an integrated community."

The leaflet says: "Gender inequality is reflected in traditional ideas about the roles of women and men. Though they have shifted over time, the assumptions and stereotypes that underpin those ideas are often deeply-rooted."

It acknowledged that "a large majority of people that have been pregnant or have given birth identify as women."

Maternity leave
No more 'expectant mothers' phrase urges the British Medical Association. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

However, it said: "We can include intersex men and transmen who may get pregnant by saying 'pregnant people' instead of 'expectant mothers.'"

Other new phrases for medical staff

In addition, doctors have also been advised to refer to "the elderly" as "older people" instead and disabled lifts should be called "accessible lifts".

Further, someone who is "biologically male or female" should be called "assigned male or female." the newspaper said.

That is not all. "Mankind" and "manpower" are now not acceptable and should be avoided as it is not good practice to use a masculine noun, the guidance reads.

The term "Christian name" should also be dropped as not everyone is a Christian. And instead of family name, medical staff have been advised to use the phrase "last name".

BMA says leaflet only guidance

A BMA spokesman said: "This is a guide for BMA staff and representatives aimed at promoting an inclusive workplace at the BMA. It is not workplace guidance for doctors which is clear from the fact it does not refer to patients."