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The United Kingdom is continuing to move away from prescribing puberty blockers to children after having used this approach to “gender-affirming care” for decades. The development comes amid widespread debate in the Western world about treatment for children suffering from gender dysphoria. It is a welcome sign, but there is still more work to be done on this front in the United States.
The National Health Service (NHS) released a statement noting that the organization “will only commission puberty suppressing hormones as part of clinical research” instead of prescribing the medication to children on a routine basis. The decision was made to follow the recommendations provided in an independent review conducted by Dr. Hilary Cass which highlighted “the significant uncertainties surrounding the use of hormone treatments.”
The report continued:
We are now going out to targeted stakeholder testing on an interim clinical commissioning policy proposing that, outside of a research setting, puberty suppressing hormones should not be routinely commissioned for children and adolescents who have gender incongruence/dysphoria.
NHS England also announced the establishment of an oversight board to look into the effects of puberty blockers:
NHS England has established a new national Children and Young People’s Gender Dysphoria Research Oversight Board which has now approved the development of a study into the impact of puberty suppressing hormones (‘puberty blockers’) on gender dysphoria in children and young people with early-onset gender dysphoria. More information on the Board and the study can be found in the consultation report.
The report continued:
The Service will adopt a holistic, multi-disciplinary integrated approach to assessing and responding to an individual’s needs in view of the range of co-presentations that may typically present in this patient cohort, and the range of complexities relating to gender identity development. The most appropriate clinical pathway in the best interests of the child or young person will be determined through an integrated multidisciplinary team (MDT) approach, fully involving the child or young person and their family.
As I stated previously, this is a welcome sign. It shows that the governments of European nations like the United Kingdom, Finland, Sweden, and others are realizing that the use of puberty blockers and other forms of “gender-affirming care” are not the panacea for gender dysphoria that proponents make them out to be. Other studies have shown that these treatments can cause irreversible harm to children that can have serious consequences into adulthood.
Unfortunately, the United States has not yet realized the threat that “gender-affirming care” poses to American children. Too many medical professionals are prescribing these drugs to children without adequate data showing that they are a benefit to mental health. Indeed, more and more detransitioners have been publicly speaking out against the rush to trans children, telling their stories about how it has affected their lives.
Still, it is clear that progress is being made. Most of the country opposes giving children puberty blockers and surgical treatments to address gender dysphoria. The issue is getting far more exposure due to members of the media who are willing to draw attention to it. States are passing laws banning “gender-affirming care” for minors, much to the chagrin of folks on the progressive left, who seemingly never saw a child they didn’t want to trans. There is more work to be done, but it looks like things are starting to move in the right direction.