West Virginia Republican Governor Jim Justice joined 10 other US states on Wednesday by signing a bill that bansgender affirming care for minors,outlawing medically supported treatments for transgender youngsters under the age of 18.
The bill bans transgender youth from being prescribedfully reversible puberty blockers and hormone therapy. It also outlaws gender affirming operation, which doctors believe does not happen in West Virginia anyway.
The difference between other states who have passed the bill and West Virginia is that the latter allows medical professionals to opt for medical therapy if a minor might be at risk of self-harm or suicide.
The law will take effect in January 2024, according to Associated Press. Under the legal restriction, a patient only with severe gender dysphoria and after parental consent will be prescribed puberty blockers as well as hormone therapy.
The law also mandates that practitioners, both for physical and mental health, must be trained to diagnose and treat teenagers with the condition. They will be required to submit a testimony that the minor did require medical intervention to prevent self-harm.
Gender affirming care for minors is a medical approach that aims to support and affirm a child's gender identity. This care is provided to minors who are transgender, nonbinary, or gender-nonconforming, and it can involve a range of treatments and interventions to help them feel more comfortable in their gender.
Gender affirming care for minors may include a variety of interventions, depending on the needs of the child and their family. Some common treatments may include gender-affirming therapy, hormone therapy, puberty blockers, and gender-affirming surgeries.
States that have banned gender affirming care include Alabama, Arkansas, Utah, Texas, Arizona, South Dakota, Iowa, and Georgia, according to HRC.
States that are considering banning gender affirming care include Wyoming, Montana, Kansas, and Oklahoma.