The epoch times

Taxpayers support gender transition treatments for underprivileged kids in Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania taxpayers are increasingly burdened with the rising⁣ medical costs of low-income ​children seeking gender reassignment treatment. This is due to the long-term commitment involved in prescribing hormones to ⁢change a‍ person’s gender appearance.

Since 2015, taxpayers have been funding gender-affirming ⁤treatments⁢ for low-income children‍ through the Children’s Health⁢ Insurance Program (CHIP), following lobbying efforts by doctors from Pennsylvania hospitals. According to​ data‌ from the Pennsylvania Family Institute, over ⁤$20 ‌million has been spent on transgender surgeries and services​ for children aged 18 and under.

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“This shocking report reveals Pennsylvania taxpayers are being ⁣forced to fund harmful drugs and surgeries on children, sending millions of dollars every year to carry out detrimental and irreversible procedures upon minors,” said Michael Geer,​ president of the Pennsylvania ⁣Family‍ Institute.

From 2015 to 2022, Pennsylvania has witnessed a significant increase in funding for gender transition treatments for children. In 2015, the state spent nearly $61,000, but by 2022, the expenditure had⁤ skyrocketed to over $5 million.

(Courtesy of the Pennsylvania Family Institute)

The Epoch Times reached out to the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) to inquire about the reasons⁤ behind the spending increase. However, DHS did ‌not respond before press time.

According to‍ the Pennsylvania Family‌ Institute, at least three children’s hospitals​ in Pennsylvania currently offer‍ gender services: the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia ‌(CHOP),⁢ UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, and Penn State Health Children’s Hospital.

“This is state-sponsored child mutilation that taxpayers ‍are being forced​ to fund,” Geer emphasized. “Not one penny of funding should be used to advance this type of harmful activity.”

Treatments

The data obtained by the Pennsylvania Family ⁤Institute includes codes and‍ descriptions for each treatment‌ paid for by DHS. However, ​it does not indicate the number of treatments per patient,⁣ making ⁤it impossible to determine the total number of minors who received medications and procedures.

The treatments listed in the data include androgenic agents for transitioning from female to male, as well as estrogenic agents that cause male breast development. Some girls were given Yuvafem and Estring, menopause symptom-reducing inserts, which come ​with warnings about potential ​risks⁢ such as‌ dementia.⁣ Many treatments consist of hormones typically used by women in menopause ​and post-menopause, including gels,⁢ creams, patches, and pills. Testosterone replacements, ⁢usually prescribed for men with insufficient testosterone production, are also being used off-label.

“Since no drugs are specifically for sex reassignment or transition-related services,‌ pharmacy claims were only included for recipients with⁤ a previous gender identity disorder diagnosis or personal history of sex reassignment diagnosis,” noted DHS in a statement attached to ​the data provided to the Pennsylvania Family Institute.

Training for Transition

In addition to funding drugs and procedures, Pennsylvania taxpayers have also financed the‍ expansion of gender care ⁢services. The Pennsylvania DHS allocated over $176,000 to the Gender and Sexuality Development Program at CHOP for transgender therapy ⁣training workshops.

Between 2018 and​ 2022, more than 1,800 mental ​health providers and educators participated in webinars and in-person training. The training emphasizes ‍treating children under 8 with acceptance and affirmation, guiding families through social gender transitions, and administering puberty blockers and hormone therapy based on age.

It is important to note ​that puberty blockers can have permanent effects, pausing puberty and allowing children more time to explore their​ gender identity before irreversible changes occur. However,‍ these blockers are expensive, ⁤with‍ costs ranging from $9,000 to $49,000 per treatment.

Dr. Zachary McClain, assistant professor of pediatrics at the Perelman School of Medicine and‌ program director of adolescent medicine, stated that insurance covers ⁣the cost of these treatments 72 percent ​of the time.

Hormone therapy is typically initiated when​ a child’s ‌peer group begins showing signs of puberty, usually around age ​14, and helps align their body with their desired gender characteristics.

2) Should children have the capacity to⁣ fully understand the implications and consequences of ​gender reassignment procedures before undergoing them?

Cally prescribed for adults, but are being used on children as young as⁤ 13 years‍ old.

The​ long-term effects of these treatments on children are not yet fully understood. ⁤However, numerous⁣ studies have raised concerns ​about the potential health ‍risks and⁤ psychological consequences ​of gender reassignment‌ procedures and hormone therapies. Studies have shown increased ‌rates of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and⁢ cancer among individuals who have undergone hormonal treatments for gender⁤ transition.

Furthermore,‍ critics argue ​that children ⁢may‍ not have the capacity‍ to fully understand the implications and consequences⁢ of such life-altering decisions.⁢ They argue that children should be given the opportunity to explore their gender identity and express themselves freely, but undergoing irreversible medical procedures should only⁣ be considered when they reach an age of consent and have the cognitive ability⁣ to understand the long-term consequences.

The issue of​ using taxpayer money to fund gender reassignment treatments⁤ for low-income children has⁢ sparked a wide range of opinions and ⁤debates ‌in Pennsylvania and across the⁤ country. Those in favor argue that healthcare is a basic ‍human right and ‍that denying access to necessary treatments for low-income⁢ individuals⁤ would be discriminatory. They emphasize the importance of ⁣providing comprehensive healthcare services that⁣ cater to ‍the specific needs of transgender individuals.

However, critics argue that​ funding gender reassignment treatments with taxpayer ⁣money sets a dangerous precedent. They argue that taxpayer funds should be allocated towards more critical healthcare needs, such as life-saving treatments and ‍medical services that benefit a larger population. They question the prioritization⁣ of gender reassignment ⁣treatments over‌ other healthcare needs that may be more urgent and life-threatening.

As the ‍debate continues, it is ​evident that the issue of gender reassignment treatments for low-income children will remain a‌ controversial and complex topic. It requires careful⁤ consideration of medical‍ ethics, the⁢ rights of transgender individuals,⁣ and⁣ the‍ allocation of taxpayer funds. Finding a balance that ensures access to necessary healthcare services while ‍addressing the concerns ‌of ⁤taxpayers remains a ⁢challenge that Pennsylvania and other states ⁣will need to navigate.



" Conservative News Daily does not always share or support the views and opinions expressed here; they are just those of the writer."

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