5 facts about gender-affirming care
Gender-affirming care is life-saving, and we all should have the right to access the healthcare we need to survive and thrive—without government interference.
But in 2023, legislative attacks on transgender people, have exploded across the country. This includes here in Kansas, the Free State, where radical politicians have leveraged their lawmaking power and highly inflammatory rhetoric to spread blatant disinformation.
Some of these attacks are bans on gender-affirming care, like SB 233, which represent perhaps the most egregious examples of how politicians sidestep expert medical advice, overreach the appropriate level of governmental regulation of medicine, and intrude on the deeply personal healthcare decision of trans youth and their families.
Here are five facts about gender-affirming care for trans young people that show why we need to ensure access:
1 — Every major medical association agrees: gender affirming care for young trans people is medically necessary, safe, effective, and evidence-based. The American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and other groups all support gender-affirming care for transgender youth and oppose bans like SB 233 which seek to criminalize providers who want to provide safe, effective, medically necessary, and evidence-based care to young people in need.1
2 — Trans young people do NOT make healthcare decisions on their own.
Psychologists, psychiatrists, family physicians, and specialists all work together with trans young people and their families to determine the best course of treatment. They develop a care plan that is unique and individual to the patient and their needs. For minors, parents or guardians must consent to the treatment plan.
3 — Gender-affirming care differs vastly depending on age. Prepubescent trans kids do not receiving permanent or irreversible medical care such as surgeries—regardless of what fearmongering politicians might claim.4—Research shows that 98% of young people that start gender-affirming care as adolescents continue that care as adults.
Among the small number of people that do stop receiving gender-affirming care, the most common reason for doing is not because of regret, but rather because of inability to afford continuing the care or because of fear of violence for living as a trans person.
5 — There’s no evidence that families are being pushed into this care. Rather, they’re able to determine what’s best for their kids after proper evaluation and informed consent. Healthcare bans would take away the only options families have for safe, evidence-based medical care
You can show up and support evidence-based, gender affirming care for Kansans and Kansas kids with us by telling your legislators not to support anti-trans legislation this session.
1 See, e.g., https://www.ama-assn.org/press-center/press-releases/ama-reinforces-oppo....