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WASHINGTON, D.C., May 10, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) – The Biden administration took action on Monday to force hospitals and medical professionals to perform “sex-change” surgeries and other transgender procedures, regardless of religious objections.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced Monday that it will interpret and enforce federal healthcare and anti-discrimination law to apply to sexual orientation and gender identity. The move is an official reinstatement of a previous Obama administration policy and reverses a Trump-era rule protecting conscience rights of medical providers.
The agency cited the Supreme Court’s recent Bostock v. Clayton County decision, which was widely criticized last year for attempting to redefine sex discrimination according to “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.”
HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra teased lawsuits against healthcare providers who resist the new mandate, stating that HHS plans to “act on related reports of discrimination.” The latest attack on religious liberties by the Biden administration comes just three weeks after HHS filed a lawsuit to force medical professionals to offer transgender procedures.
HHS Assistant Secretary for Health Dr. Richard Levine, a man who currently goes by the name “Rachel” and says he is a woman, suggested that the move seeks to prevent individuals who identify as “LGBTQ” from being denied services “to fix a broken bone” or “screen for cancer risk.”
“Contrary to the misleading HHS announcement, no American is being denied care for broken arms, or standard medical procedures based on their gender ‘identity’ or sexual orientation,” CatholicVote president Brian Burch responded. “This move by HHS is a setup to normalize and strong-arm doctors into administering puberty blocking drugs on children, performing sex-change surgeries, and more.”
“Catholic hospitals and doctors are likely to come under increased pressure and scrutiny as a result,” Burch said. “The Biden administration has invented a phony crisis in order to launch yet another attack on faith-based private health care.”
“Becerra is threatening to put doctors and hospitals that disagree with current transgender ideology out of business, including those with medical, religious, or moral objections to conducting sex-reassignment surgeries on minors,” commented Roger Severino, senior fellow and director of the HHS Accountability Project at the Ethics & Public Policy Center.
Severino was the director of the Office for Civil Rights at HHS from March 2017 to January 2021, where he oversaw the rollback of transgender mandate regulations under Obamacare and founded the HHS Conscience and Religious Freedom Division.
“Becerra is trying to change the fundamental practice of medicine and science by the stroke of a pen, but will soon learn through lawsuits that sex as a biological reality won’t be so easily erased,” Severino said.
“This lawless action circumvents the public rulemaking process followed by both the Trump and Obama administrations on this issue and contradicts an existing court injunction. Worst of all, instead of respecting scientists and doctors who recognize objective biological realities in their professions, it brands them as bigots at risk of losing HHS funds,” Severino concluded.
Levine, a Biden appointee, was confirmed by the Democrat-led Senate last month in a 52-48 vote. During his confirmation hearing in February, Levine repeatedly refused to deny that children should have their sexual organs amputated if they experience gender confusion.
Up to 88-97.8 percent of children diagnosed gender dysphoria naturally grow out of the condition by adulthood. Nevertheless, when started on a path of “gender transitioning” and puberty blockers, as many as 100 percent go on to use potentially deadly cross-sex hormones, permanently damaging their fertility. Most gender dysphoric people who apply cross-sex hormones later undergo surgeries to remove their testes or ovaries, a 2018 study found.
Levine publicly advocated for child “sex-change” surgeries before being appointed by the White House earlier this year.
“We know this is not based in science,” American Principles Project president Terry Schilling reacted to HHS’s action on Monday. “In fact, just two months ago, one of the largest hospitals in Sweden announced it would no longer be giving gender transition drugs to children under 16 due to a lack of understanding about the drugs’ effects.”
“And last year, a High Court in the U.K. ruled against the country’s largest gender clinic due to doubt over the ability of children to consent to such ‘treatments,’” Schilling added. “Yet, it is now apparently the policy of the U.S. government that such treatments must be given to children or else healthcare institutions risk losing federal funding and being shut down.”
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has never approved cross-sex hormones or puberty blockers for underage gender dysphoria sufferers, and no long-term studies have been conducted on minors subjected to the practices. Biden nevertheless has stated that he believes there should be “zero discrimination” regarding anything that an allegedly “transgender” child as young as eight years old could “be or do.”
“The idea that an 8-year-old child or a 10-year-old child decides, ‘you know I decided I want to be transgender, that's what I think I'd like to be, it would make my life a lot easier.’ There should be zero discrimination,” Biden said on the campaign trail last year. “None, zero.”