Sex reassignment surgery requires the intervention of doctors. But what kind of treatment is it? Is it a therapy for a disease which should be offered only after psychiatric authorization? Or is it a biomedical enhancement which anyone can freely choose?
The answer to this theoretical question has practical consequences. If it is a therapy, then transgenderism is a disease. If it is an enhancement, then it hardly deserves to be funded by the government.
In a very interesting article in the Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, Tomislav Bracanović, of the University of Zagreb, in Croatia, analyses the competing conceptions. . . [Full text]
British doctors have been told not to call pregnant women ‘mothers’ in a British Medical Association (BMA) document that has been slammed by conservative commentators.
In a booklet entitled A Guide To Effective Communication: Inclusive Language In The Workplace, doctors are instructed to use “inclusive language” that demonstrates “a commitment to equality and inclusion”. This includes revising conventional language used during pregnancy:
“Gender inequality is reflected in traditional ideas about the roles of women and men…We can include intersex men and transmen who may get pregnant by saying ‘pregnant people’ instead of ‘expectant mothers’.”
In an introduction to the guide on the BMA’s website, senior executive Dr Anthea Mowat wrote: ‘I would encourage you all to read and share this guide, and think about how you can apply it in your day-to-day work. This is a time where we need to come together to support and protect our colleagues and our patients.’
Conservative MP Philip Davies described the guidance as ‘completely ridiculous’: “If you can’t call a pregnant woman an expectant mother, then what is the world coming to?'”
Women’s rights campaigner Laura Perrins was equally critical of the document:
‘As every doctor knows only females can have children. To say otherwise is offensive and dangerous. This will offend women up and down the country, and is an example of the majority of women being insulted for a tiny minority of people.’
The BMA controversy comes just weeks after British media outlets reported the ‘first male pregnancy’, involving a transgender who halted her gender transition to being a male so that she could have a child.
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CMDA – The Point
What do healthcare professionals and health institutions need to know about and how can they defend themselves from the Obama administration’s newly enacted transgender mandate?
What happened when?
The transgender mandate, promulgated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under the assumed authority of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), went into effect July 18, 2016. A new website explains what the mandate requires, why it violates the law and what conscientious objectors can do to protect their rights.
Whom does the rule target?
HHS recently mandated that healthcare professionals must perform gender transition procedures on any child referred by a mental health professional, even if the physician believes the treatment or hormone therapy could harm the child.
Healthcare professionals who follow the Hippocratic Oath to act in the best interest of their patient instead of this new mandate can face severe consequences, including losing their jobs. The transgender mandate also requires virtually all private insurance companies and many employers to cover gender transition procedures or face stiff penalties and legal action. . . [Full text]
Mail on Sunday
Sanchez Manning, Stephen Adams
Children as young as nine will be given controversial drugs on the NHS to prepare them for sex-swap surgery, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.
The treatment, which halts the onset of adulthood, is aimed at youngsters who believe they are trapped in the wrong body. But critics accused the clinic offering the puberty- postponing injections of ‘playing God’.
‘I think many people will be horrified at the thought of a nine-year-old being provided with a drug that effectively stops them developing and maturing naturally,’ said Conservative MP Andrew Percy.
Others insisted that undisputed research shows that the vast majority of under-16s who are troubled about their gender do not go on to take the drastic step of surgery. Many turn out to be gay, but no longer feel confused about whether they are male or female.
Although the gender treatment is reversible, there are concerns about the long-term effects on brain development, bone growth and fertility.
The drugs, known as hypothalamic blockers, stunt the development of sexual organs so less surgery is required if a child chooses to change sex after reaching adolescence. . . [Full text]
CHICAGO – A small but growing number of teens and even younger children who think they were born the wrong sex are getting support from parents and from doctors who give them sex-changing treatments, according to reports in the medical journal Pediatrics.
It’s an issue that raises ethical questions, and some experts urge caution in treating children with puberty-blocking drugs and hormones.
An 8-year-old second-grader in Los Angeles is a typical patient. Born a girl, the child announced at 18 months, “I a boy” and has stuck with that belief. The family was shocked but now refers to the child as a boy and is watching for the first signs of puberty to begin treatment, his mother told The Associated Press. . . [Full text]