DeSantis: ‘Woke Medicine is a Huge Threat,’ Points to European Caution on Youth Gender Transition

August 17, 2022 Updated 9:32 AM ET

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks to guests at the Nebraska Steak Fry in Nebraska City, Neb. (Right Cheer).
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks to guests at the Nebraska Steak Fry in Nebraska City, Neb. (Right Cheer).

August 17, 2022 Updated 9:26 A.M. ET

TALLAHASSEE (FLV) – Gov. Ron DeSantis said the European medical profession is not “taken over” by ideology and partisanship, citing examples of research on COVID during the pandemic and gender transitioning treatments for those with gender dysphoria.

“These European countries, they’re basically secular, more liberal democracies than we are,” DeSantis said. “But yet the medical profession has not been kind of taken over by ideology and partisanship the way it has in the United States.”

The National Health Service in England announced in July that it was shutting down the country’s only youth gender clinic after a sharp rise of referrals and a lack of understanding in the patients being referred for treatment.

An interim report submitted to NHS England said the country needs to know more about the population being referred and the outcomes. There is also a lack of consensus about the nature of gender dysphoria and the appropriate clinical response. The report said the clinical approach to gender dysphoria has not been subjected to some of the normal quality controls that are typically applied with new or innovative treatments.

The Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare updated its health care service guidelines for those under 18 with gender dysphoria. The eligibility for pediatric gender transitioning with puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones in Sweden “will be sharply curtailed.”

The review concluded that the evidence base for hormonal interventions for gender-dysphoric youth is of low quality and that hormonal treatments may carry risks.

“In addition, NBHW noted increasing reports of detransition and transition-related regret among youth who transitioned in recent years,” the report said.

The NBHW said the risks of hormonal interventions for youth outweigh the potential benefits.

“If you looked at Sweden, and some of these countries, how they handled COVID, it was evidence based, right,” DeSantis said. “And you see the same thing with this, they did go down the road of trying to do and they’ll call it gender affirming care, but you’re giving people very young kids puberty blockers, you’re doing sex change operations that are irreversible on them. And what they found was like this was very, very damaging.”

Florida banned Medicaid from covering gender transitioning medical treatments, like puberty blockers and sex reassignment surgeries, for minors.

“The science on this is incredibly weak to justify being able to do it,” DeSantis said. “And yet we have people testifying at our Board of Medicine hearing, who went through these procedures, and regret it and talk about how damaging it’s been.”

FL DOH Press Sec. Slams State Chapter of American Academy of Pediatrics for Supporting Double Mastectomies for Children

The Florida chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics supports sex-reassignment surgeries and puberty blockers as methods of treatment for minors dealing with gender dysphoria. The FCAAP argue that treatments like puberty blockers and sex reassignment surgeries improves the mental health of youth.

“Appropriate gender-affirming care, conducted in close coordination with pediatricians and parents, is safe and effective for treating patients experiencing gender dysphoria,” said FCAAP President Lisa Gwynn.

DeSantis reemphasized the need for a law for people who have undergone gender transitioning treatments to sue physicians for damages.

“If you’re 14 years old, you cannot go and get a tattoo in the state of Florida, why should you be able to go and the left wants you to be able to do this without parent’s permission,” DeSantis said. “Why would you be able to go take your perhaps have someone take your private parts away? It just doesn’t make sense.”

Former Transgender Teen Supports FL Proposal to Ban Medicaid Funding for Puberty Blockers, Sex Reassignment Surgery

Chloe Cole, who once identified as transgender and underwent surgery to affirm that identity, spoke at the medical board hearing. Cole medically transitioned from ages 13 to 16.

“I don’t know if I’ll be able to fully carry a child and I might be at increased risk for certain cancers,” Cole said. “Because I do not have my breasts, I don’t have breasts, I’m not able to breastfeed whatever future children I have.”

“That realization actually was one of the biggest things that leads me to realizing that this was not the path that I should have taken,” she said. 

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