Pediatricians and child psychologists from Yale University and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School have released a report highlighting the medical science behind gender affirming care.
They say the purpose of the report is to debunk misinformation Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and Republican leaders from other states have been using to define treatment for teenagers who are seeking to change their gender identity as child abuse. The group of medical professionals who release the report feel the country is at an inflection point when it comes to the ability of many to differentiate real medical information from medical misinformation. Dr. Meredithe McNamara is an sssistant professor of pediatrics and specializes in adolescent medicine at Yale University’s School of Medicine. She told Texas Standard that’s why this group decided to release this report.
“Texas and Alabama officials have falsely claimed that doctors are routinely sterilizing children and teenagers with surgical procedures,” McNamara said. “That is so far from the standard of care.”
Mental health impacts of gender affirming care should be considered in evaluating its benefits, McNamara said.
“The mental health impacts of gender dysphoria are severely minimized in the [AG Ken Paxton’s] opinion, and the way that gender affirming care is described in the opinion itself really reflects a very old standard of care, the way that this care might have been practiced 20, 30 years ago,” she said.
“We felt like we had to challenge misinformation with real information. It’s actually quite easy to do. I think that a replication of this type of effort would be helpful in combating misinformation wherever it exists,” Dr. McNamara said. “But we felt like it was especially important in this domain because there is not much of a precedent for the illegalization of the standard of care in medicine.”