Missouri this month became the first state in the nation to severely restrict gender-based treatment for people of all ages, following a series of quieter steps across the country that limited transgender adults’ access to health care.
Last year, Florida joined six other states in banning Medicaid from covering some forms of gender-based care for transgender people of all ages. These prohibitions apply approximately 38,000 beneficiaries public insurance programs, according to the Williams Institute, a research center at UCLA Law School.
And in at least five states, Republican lawmakers have proposed bills that would remove gender-based care for minors as well as young people. Some are trying to ban it for those under 21, while others are trying to ban it for those under 26.
Missouri’s new radical politics took a different approach. Citing consumer protection laws designed to regulate fraud, State Attorney General Andrew Bailey issued an emergency rule barring physicians from providing gender-based treatment to patients of any age unless they comply with a number of significant restrictions, including an 18-month psychological evaluation. . The rule also stated that patients should not receive gender-based treatment until any mental health issues were “resolved”.
Onerous restrictions amount to a “de facto prohibition,” said Jillian Branstetter, a communications specialist for the American Civil Liberties Union, whose Missouri chapter announced his intention to file a legal challenge to the rule.
“The political situation regarding health care for transgender people has always been in this direction,” Ms Branstetter said.
The rule excludes people who are currently undergoing treatment if they and their physicians “promptly” comply with psychological assessments and other restrictions.
Aro Royston, a 35-year-old transgender man from St. Louis, said he was shocked.under the new policy. He said he took testosterone for eight years with monthlysupplements prescribed by his doctor. If he no longer had access to treatment, he said, he would be “devastated” and travel out of state to get help.
“I think what upsets me the most is that I am an active member of this society,” said Mr. Royston, program manager for an American defense contractor. “I worked on defense programs to protect my nation. And my nation can’t protect me?”
Missouri’s new policy goes into effect on April 27 and expires in February 2024, when the state legislature resumes its session. (Two bills which would ban childcare — and prevent Medicaid from covering it for all ages — didn’t move forward in this year’s session.)
While Mr. Bailey’s order applies to all ages, his public comments have focused on children, echoing the rhetoric of Republican politicians across the country and in Missouri. “As Attorney General, I will always fight for the protection of children because gender reassignment measures are experimental,” Mr. Bailey tweeted.
In February, his office launched an investigation into the Washington University Youth Gender Clinic in St. Louis after a former employee filed a whistleblowing report. complaint arguing that the patients were sent for treatment in a hurry and did not undergo an adequate psychological examination. (Clinic said that he followed accepted standards of care.)
Asked why his order includes adults, Madeleine Siren, a spokeswoman for Mr Bailey, said: “We have serious concerns about how children are treated in the state, but we believe everyone has a right to evidence-based medicine. and adequate mental health. take care.”
Fourteen other states — Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, and West Virginia, and as of Wednesday, North Dakota — have passed laws restricting gendered care for minors.
Although there are disputes between them. medical workers about which children would benefit from gender-confirming care and when they should start treatment, several major medical groups in the United States, including American Academy of Pediatricsdenounced the statute.
For transgender adults, many studies have shown that transitional care Maybeimprovepsychological well-being and quality of life.
Terry Schilling, president of the US-based advocacy group American Principles, which advocates limiting the rights of transgender people, said in an interview earlier this year that the focus on minors was a short-term political calculation. He said his organization’s long-term goal is to phase out transition aid altogether.
“I feel about this whole issue the same way I feel about lobotomy or eugenics — it’s a bad medical fad,” he said.
Mr Schilling said the policy could include outright bans for people of all ages or bills to make it easier for people to sue health care providers if they regret making the switch. He also mentioned the possibility of classifying transitional care as “consumer fraud” – the same approach suggested by Mr. Bailey – because he claims that gender reassignment is impossible.
for many years, seven states Arizona, Florida, Missouri, Nebraska, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas have adopted policies that prevent Medicaid from covering certain types of gender-affirming care. (The federal insurance program for low-income people is partially funded by the states, which also have wide discretion in determining eligibility.)
The Medicaid bans are based “on a shaky legal foundation,” said Christie Mallory, legal director of the Williams Institute. Courts in Wisconsin and West Virginia have ruled that such bans violate the Affordable Care Act, which prohibits sex discrimination, as well as other federal regulations.
But some lawmakers are introducing broader bills that would ban gender-related care from public or managed health centers or those that receive public funding.
In Oklahoma, for example, a bill introduced this year by state senator Nathan Dam would withhold Medicaid reimbursement — for any procedure or treatment — at any health center that offers gender-based care or works with a provider that offers it.
In a January interview, Mr. Dam said his only goal was to prevent taxpayer money from covering the transition. “If an adult wants to make this decision and pay for it himself, he can do it,” he said. However, he also acknowledged that the policy may encourage some health care providers to stop offering care to adults.
Over the past few decades, physicians increasingly removed Obstacles, such as psychological assessments, for adults to receive hormonal treatment, shifting decision making to the patients themselves.
“There is a very, very broad consensus that gender-affirming adult care is appropriate and beneficial,” said Erica Anderson, a clinical psychologist and former president of the U.S. Professional Association for Transgender Health.
Dr. Anderson, a transgender woman, in public expressed concern about the growing number of adolescents, especially those with complex psychiatric problems, seeking help for gender reasons. She also supported the policies of some European countries, including Sweden another Britanniawhich have recently restricted when children can have certain medical procedures.
But last month Dr. Anderson joined hundreds of doctors in signing a letter emphasizing that gender-affirming care is beneficial and important for many transgender children and condemning legal prohibitions in the United States. Efforts to extend such restrictions to adults would cause significant harm, she said.
“The blur between youth and adult care is ominous,” she said. “This is an ominous sign of excess on the part of people who think the state should decide people’s privacy.”
Missouri’s rule also met with opposition from some conservatives in the state. This was stated by Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft, a Republican who recently announced that he was running for governor. St. Louis Public Radio that while he supported child bans, he did not believe the state should restrict adult care.
“I don’t think people should be doing this,” Mr. Ashcroft said, referring to adult gender treatment. “But there is a difference between what I think and where I think the government should be involved.”
From AI-powered chatbot apps to TikTok therapists offering 60-second videos on topics like trauma and perfectionism, it’s never been easier to get advice on improving your mental health. Now when it comes to tabletop RPGs like Dungeons and Dragons are becoming more and more popular, some seek to use them for therapeutic purposes.
Play Therapy UK aims to encourage socially excluded groups, including the homeless, people recovering from drug and alcohol addiction, and military veterans, to play games as a means of solving personal problems. The charity claims that the role-playing aspects of the sessions can improve social skills, help cope with trauma, and increase receptivity to therapy. New scientist joined the session in London to find out more.
It’s been a busy week, from lab leak theories at the COVID-19 origin hearing to the long-awaited Supreme Court ruling on access to the abortion pill mifepristone. But that’s not all that’s happening in healthcare. Here are some exciting updates you might have missed, according to Yahoo News partners.
New study may explain why your hair turns gray with age
Researchers at NYU’s Grossman School of Medicine studied melanocyte stem cells in mice — a type of cell that also occurs in humans — and found that these cells can eventually get “stuck” with age, eventually losing the ability to move between growth zones. in the hair. particles and produce the pigment that provides hair color.
If this result also applies to humans, the researchers hope it could lead to a way to prevent hair from losing its youthful hue.
“The newly discovered mechanisms raise the possibility that the same fixed position of melanocyte stem cells could exist in humans,” Qi Song, lead investigator of the study, says in a press release. “If this is the case, this represents a potential route to reverse or prevent graying of human hair by helping stuck cells move back between the developing compartments of the hair follicle.”
UNICEF report says 12.7 million children in Africa missed vaccinations
new report published by UNICEF On Thursday, 12.7 million children in Africa were found to have missed one or more vaccinations between 2019 and 2021 due to disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, leading to a “child survival crisis” on the continent, a Yahoo partner said. News Canadian press accused by UNICEF. “heavy demands on health systems, diversion of immunization resources to COVID-19 vaccinations, shortage of healthcare workers and self-isolation measures”, as well as conflict, climate change and vaccine distrust due to declining vaccination rates, which now leaves the continent more vulnerable to serious illnesses. Last year, 34 of Africa’s 54 countries experienced outbreaks of measles, cholera and poliovirus. Africa needs to vaccinate some 33 million children by 2025 to recover from COVID-19’s “destructive trail”, according to the World Health Organization.
Immunization rates have also suffered in other parts of the world. The report says that some 67 million children missed routine immunizations, with vaccination coverage falling in 112 countries. Vaccine skepticism also grew during this period, including in South Korea, Japan, Papua New Guinea and Ghana, where confidence fell by more than a third.
Elite athletes live longer than average people, study finds
A study published The UK’s International Longevity Center (ILC) found on Wednesday that elite athletes can live up to five years longer than the rest of us, a Yahoo News Evening Standard partner reported.
The researchers looked at records of Commonwealth Games participants from 1930 and found significant differences in the life expectancy of medal winners compared to the life expectancy of people in the general population who were born in the same year.
“We have long known that sports are good for health, but our research shows the significant impact that top-level sport can have on the life expectancy of athletes around the world,” said Professor Les Mayhew, Deputy Head of Global Research at the ILC.
Male life expectancy increased by 29% with water sports, 25% with athletics and 24% with indoor sports, which the researchers say is between 4.5 and 5.3 extra years of life. Women’s life expectancy increased by 22%, or 3.9 years, in all sports.
Some other interesting findings noted by the researchers: wrestlers live longer than boxers; the life expectancy of long-distance runners is slightly higher than that of short-distance runners; and cycling was the only sport not associated with increased life expectancy.
New study links sugary drinks to early death in some people
According to research published by the Harvard School of Public Health. T. H. Chana on Wednesday, high consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages such as sodas, fruit punch and lemonade was associated with an increased risk of premature death and cardiovascular disease among people with type 2 diabetes.It is reported by USA Today, partner of Yahoo News.
The study authors say the report, which includes data from 1980 to 2018, is one of the first large-scale studies examining the association between death or illness and alcohol use among people with type 2 diabetes.
“Drinks are an important component of our diet and their quality can vary greatly,” lead author Qi Song said in a press release. “People living with diabetes may benefit particularly from drinking healthy beverages, but data has been sparse. These findings help fill this knowledge gap and may inform patients and caregivers about diet and diabetes management.”
The study found that replacing one sweetened drink per day with an artificially sweetened drink was also associated with an 8% reduction in the risk of “all-cause mortality” and a 15% reduction in the risk of cardiovascular death; replacing a sugary drink with an unsweetened drink such as coffee, tea, water, or low-fat cow’s milk has been linked to even greater health benefits.