Pediatric Hospital Halts Medical Mutilation of Children

Sep 14, 2023

The Washington University Pediatric “Transgender Center” at St. Louis Children’s Hospital announced Monday that it will no longer provide harmful puberty blockers or hormone therapies to children due to Missouri’s Save Adolescents from Experimentation (SAFE) Act that is now in effect. Since February 2023, Washington University has been under a multi-agency investigation accused of lying to parents and harming hundreds of children with mutilating gender procedures.

Missouri’s SAFE Act, also titled SB 49, took effect on August 28. The law states, “A health care provider shall not knowingly prescribe or administer cross-sex hormones or puberty-blocking drugs for the purpose of a gender transition for any individual under eighteen years of age.” The law allows minors harmed by these procedures to bring civil action against the medical providers who administered the procedures up to 15 years after the procedures.

In a statement, the University said that Missouri's newly enacted law makes it “untenable” to continue these procedures by giving minors a legal claim that subjects the university “to an unacceptable level of liability.”

In late August, Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey sent letters to the state’s largest health care providers calling these procedures “experimental” and advising the hospitals to cease administering them in accordance with the new law. He informed them that violations of the law would be considered “professional misconduct” and could result in the revoking of medical licenses. The University of Missouri Health and Children’s Mercy in Kansas City have indicated they are also “complying with the law." 

Southampton Healthcare in St. Louis and Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region have joined a lawsuit to challenge the law. On August 25, a circuit judge in St. Louis allowed Missouri’s SAFE Act to take effect while the lawsuit proceeds. 

At least 22 states have passed similar legislation protecting children. The other states are Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and West Virginia. 

In regards to the investigation into Washington University, the Missouri Attorney General has a sworn affidavit from whistleblower Jamie Reed detailing how St. Louis Children’s Hospital has been harming hundreds of children each year since 2018. 

Reed worked at the Washington University “Transgender Center” and was responsible for patient intake between 2018 and November 2022. She said she took the job with the intention of “saving” gender-confused children, but now she believes what was happening amounts to “permanent harm” on young, vulnerable children. 

In her affidavit, Reed asserts that individuals at the Center are using experimental drugs on children, distributing puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones without individualized assessment, and even without parental consent. Bicalutamide is a medication used to treat metastatic prostate cancer, and one of its side effects is that it feminizes the bodies of men who take it, including the appearance of breasts. The Center prescribed this cancer drug as a puberty blocker and feminizing agent for boys. As with most cancer drugs, bicalutamide has a long list of side effects including liver toxicity. There also are no clinical studies for using this drug for gender confusion, and there are no established standards of care for using this drug. 

“Almost everyone in my life advised me to keep my head down. But I cannot in good conscience do so. Because what is happening to scores of children is far more important than my comfort. And what is happening to them is morally and medically appalling,” said Reed. 

Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver said, “Many states are putting a stop to these so-called gender clinics and their harmful acts. These unnecessary medications and mutilating procedures irreversibly harm children. States must protect minors from these quack facilities.” 

Liberty Counsel advances religious liberty, the sanctity of human life, and the family through litigation and education. We depend on your support, which enables us to represent people at no cost. Click here to GIVE NOW.