Texas Medical Professionals Slam State’s Regressive New Anti-Trans Policies

A push by Texas politicians to criminalize health care for transgender children does not have the support of the medical community there.

The American Academy of Pediatrics, the Texas Pediatric Society and the Texas Nurses Association have all come out against efforts by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) and state Attorney General Ken Paxton, who want parents to be investigated if their sons or daughters are trans.

Earlier this week, citing a non-binding opinion authored by Paxton, Abbott directed the state’s child welfare agency to consider gender-affirming treatments, such as puberty blockers and hormone therapies, as a form of “child abuse.”

Under the directive, any licensed professional who has “direct contact with children” could face criminal charges for failing to report these treatments to the state.

The Texas Nurses Association, the largest state nursing association in the country, roundly condemned the effort.

“Gender affirming care is not abuse. Politics has no place in the exam room. All children deserve access to the care they need.”

– AAP President Moira Szilagyi

In addition to directly harming the psychological and physical health of transgender and gender-diverse youth, the nursing group warned that “imposing ambiguous legal consequences” on medical professionals for simply doing their jobs would “produce a chilling effect in healthcare” at large.

Those concerns were shared by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Texas Pediatric Society, both of whom have long supported gender-affirming treatments for gender dysphoria.

“What is happening in Texas directly undermines the care pediatricians provide their patients,” AAP President Moira Szilagyi said in a statement. “Pediatricians could be investigated for child abuse by simply providing evidence-based, medically necessary services.”

“Gender affirming care is not abuse. Politics has no place in the exam room. All children deserve access to the care they need,” she said.

The treatments have also long had the support of the broader U.S. medical community outside of Texas, including the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association and the Endocrine Society.

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