Florida health care providers suspend gender-positive care for adults

Family Planning and Other Health Care Providers Suspend Gender-Affirmative Medicine in Florida to Comply with New State Law Banning Transition-Related Care for Transgender Minors and Imposing Tight Restrictions on Care for Adults are doing.

Republican Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is expected to run in next week’s 2024 presidential election, on Wednesday immediately banned medical professionals from administering puberty blockers, hormone replacement therapy and surgery to transgender minors. signed a bill to

Under Florida’s penal code, anyone who breaks the law risks being convicted of a third-degree felony, which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.

Despite being proposed by Republicans in the state legislature as a measure to keep young children from making medical decisions they may later regret, the new law does not support gender-affirming medical care. imposes additional restrictions on adult access.

By only permitting physicians to provide gender-affirming services, the law significantly reduces the number of providers who can provide care. This means that other health care professionals, including physician assistants, nurses, and certified nurse-midwives, are unable to provide the care they consider medically necessary. It is performed by most major medical institutions.

According to the new law, gender reassignment medicine for adults can only be performed after signing an informed consent form, which the state medical board tasked with drafting the form has yet to sign. , and medical providers in the state are compulsorily required to sign. difficult position.

“It is clear that this law was designed not only to limit adult care, but also to create an immediate gap in access. Health care providers inside have been forced to suspend services.”We needed a consent form to comply,” a family planning spokeswoman told The Hill on Friday.

The organization has initiated a moratorium on gender-affirming medical care in the state, they said. It looks like the medical treatment will be resumed in mid-June.

In an emailed statement, the Southern, Eastern, and Northern Florida Family Planning Authority (PPSENFL) said the suspension was “to comply with a new law that prohibits skilled and competent nurses from being gender-affirming. It is said that it will be used to make “operational adjustments”. Care. “

The group said it would “reorganize doctors’ schedules, create new consent forms with language that complies with the new requirements of the law, and reduce medical We need to change the way we deliver.” “Our commitment to providing high-quality, compassionate care for patients on gender-affirming hormone therapy remains unwavering. We will navigate these changes together.”

PPSENFL said patients whose appointments were canceled due to the suspension will be contacted by June 12 to reschedule.

A new Florida law appears to have caused other small health care providers to stop providing adult gender-affirmation care as well.

“As a result of SB 254, we regret that we are no longer able to provide hormone replacement therapy (HRT), surgical permits, and gender marker forms to our hospital to meet the requirements set by the State of Florida.” non-binary, gender non-conforming patients,” the Orlando LGBTQ health center 26Health said in a statement posted Wednesday.

“While we are unable to provide these services at this time, 26Health strongly believes that transgender, gender nonbinary and gender nonconforming community members have the right to live fully and openly as they truly are.” continued the statement. “We will continue to provide care to members of our gender-diverse community, including primary care and mental health services, which are critical during this difficult time.”

Volks Health, an online-only healthcare provider, announced this week following the signing of Senate Bill 254 that it could legally offer patients sex-matching hormone therapy because the new law requires a consent form to be signed while in the hospital. announced that it will no longer be able to prescribe it. A person being examined by a doctor.

The group said it was working to hire more doctors “licensed and residing in Florida” and to open in-person clinics at “major locations around the state.”

“We will contact you again as soon as the legal implications become clear and we have information on how to set up in-person care or take any other necessary steps,” the statement said. “We are here for you. We are very sorry that your medical rights are in jeopardy.”

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