Published May 2, 2022
On Monday, May 2, 2022, EPPC Kate O’Beirne Senior Fellow Mary Rice Hasson and Fellow Rachel N. Morrison met with federal government officials to discuss concerns over a proposal by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (VA) to remove the current exclusion for “gender alterations” from its medical benefits package. EPPC scholars objected to the VA’s characterization that such care is “medically necessary” and that it is “consistent with medical industry standards.”
The EPPC scholars raised the following points in objection to the proposal:
- There is no need for federal regulatory action.
- The VA must specify the diagnosis requiring treatment and the medical services that will be covered.
- “Gender affirming” medical and surgical interventions are not “medically necessary” treatments for gender dysphoria.
- “Gender-affirming care,” including medical and surgical interventions promoted as first-line treatments for gender dysphoria, is not governed by internationally accepted, evidence-based “standards of care.”
- The lack of standards and poor evidence base for “gender-affirming” interventions likely preclude the possibility of meaningful informed consent.