The University of Washington stops offering gender-based medications to minors | ET REALITY


In June, Gov. Mike Parson, R-Mo., signed into law a ban on gender-affirming care for new patients under age 18, part of a wave of more than 20 laws across the country that severely restrict such care.

Under the new law, existing patients at the University of Washington’s youth gender clinic could still receive the treatments. But law includes a provision that allows patients to file lawsuits against doctors who prescribe hormonal medications to minors. The university said this part of the law made it “unsustainable” to continue providing this care.

Since opening in 2017, the St. Louis clinic had seen a sharp increase in patient demand, overwhelming its small staff, The New York Times reported last month. Many patients and their families told The Times that the clinic’s doctors provided excellent care and that the hormone treatments profoundly improved the patients’ mental health.

But clinic staff struggled to conduct thorough psychological assessments on patients with serious mental health problems, highlighting tensions. between experts about how many tests should be necessary before giving teenagers access to hormones.

This nuanced medical debate has developed in parallel with a broad political movement to ban gender-based treatments for minors. Major medical groups have opposite prohibitions on gender-affirming care for minors, as they have done many of the doctors who have expressed concern that some children are being rushed into treatment.

The University of Washington said its gender clinic would continue to provide hormone treatments to adult patients and offer mental health education and support to patients of all ages.

“Our physicians have cared for these patients with skill and dedication,” the school’s statement said. “They have continually provided treatment in accordance with the standard of care and with the informed consent of patients and their parents or guardians.”

After former clinic employee Jamie Reed made the information public, Missouri’s attorney general, a Republican, opened an investigation into the clinic’s operations, which continues. Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., is conducting a similar survey. consultation.

Civil rights groups are challenging Missouri’s ban, which has a “sunset” provision and will be in effect for four years. Last month, a judge rejected the groups’ request for an injunction that would have temporarily blocked enforcement of the law.

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