The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) caved to pressure from the Biden administration to remove age minimum recommendations for hormones and surgeries for trans-identifying children. Admiral Rachel Levine, the assistant secretary for health at the Department of Health and Human Services, told WPATH that age minimums would make it difficult for trans-identified youth to obtain services in the United States.

During their discussions released in an Alabama court filing, WPATH was concerned about “sloppy” assessments and “opportunism by inexperienced and sometimes dangerous providers.” One unnamed individual from WPATH thanked another person for sharing a blog article that discussed the “sloppiness” of trans-care providers and said this is an important conversation that is being suppressed.

WPATH recommended a minimum of 14 years old “for hormone treatment, 15 for mastectomies, 16 for breast augmentation, and 17 for genital surgeries.” Levine, who identifies as a transgender woman, pressured the organization to remove the age minimums. When WPATH updated the standards in September of 2022, no age minimums were listed for any treatments or procedures.

In the communication, a member of WPATH said Levine and the Biden administration are concerned that age minimums will make an already dire situation worse for trans youth in the United States. The current President Marci Bowers and President-elect Asa Radix provide transgender care at U.S. medical facilities with FTCA protection.

The HighWire covered a lawsuit against Fenway Health, which is also protected under the Federal Tort Claims Act. The FTCA gives hospitals an extra layer of protection so if the care provided by the hospital harms patients; they are unable to sue the provider. Instead, they would have to sue the United States government.

The communication between individuals at WPATH also expressed concern regarding social contagion. Here are some of the comments from the filing:

“We cannot outright dismiss the fact that social factors (also don’t like the word contagion) impact identity development and decision making in adolescents.”

“For sure is that increasing numbers are asking for medical affirming treatment. What the explanation for this increase is, is unknown and also methodologically challenging to study; social factors likely play a role.”

“Social factors are indeed an aspect of identity development for adolescents, and some young people are more influenced than others, which can be both positive (need to be surrounded by like-minded peers for love and support) and/or negative (can sometimes impact more vulnerable or susceptible young people to adopt and exploration process that might not be authentic for them). “

The comments reflect the work of Abigail Shrier in her book Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters. Shrier conducted two hundred interviews to tell the stories of children who identified as trans as a result of social factors.

The WPATH communication specifically mentions “opportunism” as a concern in the field of transgender medical care. That refers specifically to the financial incentives doctors and clinics receive for completing more procedures and prescribing more hormones. Acknowledging that social factors inevitably lead some children down the wrong identity path, as well as the profit motive of those who provide “gender-affirming care,” paints a grim picture.

Despite the internal conversations at WPATH regarding opportunism and social contagion, they fulfilled Admiral Levine’s request so that youth wouldn’t have more trouble accessing care. The flip side of that equation is that the providers would have difficulty pouncing on opportunities to provide care to more children who may be victims of a social contagion.

This comes as Eithan Haim faces political persecution for revealing that Texas Children’s Hospital unlawfully continued to provide transgender surgeries to minors after stating they would stop performing the procedures. Del Bigtree interviewed Haim on The HighWire about his revelations and what the federal government has done to intimidate him. HHS sent agents to Haim’s door as part of an investigation by the DOJ. Haim now faces charges of violating HIPAA despite not providing any personal information about any patients. If Haim is convicted, he could get up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

HHS is the agency that includes Admiral Levine. It is also the agency that contains the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), which protects transgender health clinics under the FTCA. Callen-Lorde, the clinic of WPATH President-elect Asa Radix, states on its website that “Callen-Lorde is an FTCA-deemed facility and is covered by HRSA’s FTCA malpractice insurance. This health center receives HHS funding and has federal Public Health Service deemed status concerning certain health or health-related claims, including medical malpractice claims, for itself and its covered individuals.

HHS’s motto is “Improving the health, safety, and well-being of America.” Despite this mission statement, the agency has persecuted whistleblowers who raise health concerns about children in America. Levine, on behalf of the agency, successfully manipulated WPATH’s recommendations despite their known concerns regarding social contagion and opportunism.

The HighWire has reported a study that concluded 98% of children grow out of gender confusion by adulthood. That report also details the Cass report that led England to stop prescribing puberty blockers to children. HHS continues to provide malpractice insurance to transgender clinics and has not acted upon the detailed reports indicating potential harm to children. 





Steven Middendorp

Steven Middendorp is an investigative journalist, musician, and teacher. He has been a freelance writer and journalist for over 20 years. More recently, he has focused on issues dealing with corruption and negligence in the judicial system. He is a homesteading hobby farmer who encourages people to grow their own food, eat locally, and care for the land that provides sustenance to the community.

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