DeSantis administration moves to stop sex-change medical treatments for children

by Summer Lane

Photo: Alamy

Gov. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., and his administration are taking swift action to stop the practice of medical sex changes in minors in the Sunshine State.

In April, the Florida Department of Health (FDH) released guidance that pushed back on the “unscientific shift in the treatment of gender dysphoria for children and adolescents.”

According to a report from The Daily Signal, Florida Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo has also urged the Florida Board of Medicine to take the FDH’s guidance under advisement on sex-change treatments for children.

The FDH’s April report cites a “lack of conclusive evidence, and the potential for long-term, irreversible effects” for the following advisements:

  • “Social gender transition should not be a treatment option for children or adolescents,
  • Anyone under 18 should not be prescribed puberty blockers or hormone therapy,
  • Gender reassignment surgery should not be a treatment option for children or adolescents.”

Additionally, the FDH cited “currently available evidence” to support an “unacceptably high risk of doing harm” to a child by encouraging sex-change surgeries. The report states these operations are “out of line with the genetic makeup of the child.”

According to a report from The Hill, the surgeon general’s comments to the Florida Board of Medicine occurred the same day that the Agency for Health Care Administration announced that their research found “weak to very weak” evidence to support medical treatment for sex changes in children.

The agency’s report stated that “scientific studies do not show that the use of puberty blockers improves mental health” and that there is a further lack of long-term studies on the effects of sex reassignment surgery.

According to The Hill, the agency will deny sex change-related medical treatment, such as puberty blockers and sex reassignment surgery, via Medicaid, based on that research.

Interestingly, the FDH’s report notes that children experiencing gender dysphoria “should be provided social support by peers and family and seek counseling from a licensed provider.”

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