The Florida Department of Health (DOH) today boldly issued guidelines opposing gender-affirming care for children and adolescents in direct defiance of the exact opposite guidance issued by a Biden administration beholden to the radical LGBT agenda.
The Florida guidelines immediately state why they were necessary: to counter the falsehoods propagated by the Biden administration regarding the necessity of giving gender-confused children and adolescents “affirming care” (i.e., specifically encouraging such youth to identify as the opposite sex by, among other things, giving them puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones and letting them undergo sex-altering surgeries) and to prevent the harms such care could cause:
“The Florida Department of Health wants to clarify evidence recently cited on a fact sheet released by the US Department of Health and Human Services and provide guidance on treating gender dysphoria for children and adolescents.”
The press release announcing the guidelines is much more hard-hitting:
“The Department [DOH] crafted this guidance using published and peer-reviewed data that calls into question the motives of the federal HHS. Guidance of this magnitude requires a full, diligent understanding of the scientific evidence. The current evidence does not support the use of puberty blockers, hormone treatments, or surgical procedures for children and adolescents….”
The Florida guidelines then debunk the ideologically-driven “evidence” used by the Biden administration to try to force gender affirming care on our youth:
“Systematic reviews on hormonal treatment for young people show a trend of low-quality evidence, small sample sizes, and medium to high risk of bias. A paper published in the International Review of Psychiatry states that 80% of those seeking clinical care will lose their desire to identify with the nonbirth sex. One review concludes that ‘hormonal treatments for transgender adolescents can achieve their intended physical effects, but evidence regarding their psychosocial and cognitive impact is generally lacking.’”
An accompany fact sheet goes into greater detail attacking the data used in the federal guidance. For example, the fact sheet states:
“HHS Claims that their approach ‘is critical in fostering better outcomes.’
• According to the first resource cited in the OHSA fact sheet, of ‘those who received [GAHT: gender affirming health treatment]… a greater proportion reported that they struggled to meet basic needs or were just able to meet them, compared to those who wanted GAHT but did not receive it.’
• ‘A recent Finnish study… reported on the effect of initiating cross-sex hormone therapy on functioning, progression of developmental tasks of adolescence, and psychiatric symptoms. This study found that during cross-sex hormone therapy, problems in these areas did not decrease.’
• The second study cited in this section is partly refuted by the third. The third study states that ‘transitioning socially is beneficial for children with GD could not be supported from the present results.’”
The Florida guidelines then boldly declare:
“Due to the lack of conclusive evidence, and the potential for long-term, irreversible effects, the Department’s guidelines are as follows:
• 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.
–Based on the currently available evidence, ‘encouraging mastectomy, ovariectomy, uterine extirpation, penile disablement, tracheal shave, the prescription of hormones which are out of line with the genetic make-up of the child, or puberty blockers, are all clinical practices which run an unacceptably high risk of doing harm.’
• Children and adolescents should be provided social support by peers and family and seek counseling from a licensed provider.”
Significantly, DOH adds that its guidelines “are consistent with the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services age requirement for surgical and non-surgical treatment. These guidelines are also in line with the guidance, reviews, and recommendations from Sweden, Finland, the United Kingdom, and France.”
Upon releasing the new guidelines, Florida Surgeon Joseph Lapado declared:
“The federal government’s medical establishment releasing guidance failing at the most basic level of academic rigor shows that this was never about health care. It was about injecting political ideology into the health of our children. Children experiencing gender dysphoria should be supported by family and seek counseling, not pushed into an irreversible decision before they reach 18.”
So there you have it. The woke Biden administration issues guidance on the necessity of using “gender affirming care” on confused youth by relying upon faulty evidence. The state of Florida, let by Governor Ron DeSantis and Surgeon General Joseph Lapado, calls Biden’s bluff and issues the exact opposite guidance. Let’s hope that more states gain courage from Florida’s action and likewise call out President Biden; our children are counting on us.