Gender-Affirming Care Statement by BCPA
In response to the opinion issued by the Texas Attorney General in February of 2022 the Bexar County Psychological Association (BCPA) would like to provide the following statement:
Gender-affirming care is not child abuse. More than 50% of Trans individuals experience serious suicidal ideation, which is one of the reasons why gender-affirming care is considered best practice by the majority of professional societies in psychology, medicine, social work, and other mental health professions. As such, psychologists and other health professionals are already required by Texas law to do no harm and provide gender-affirming care.
In March, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and more than 20 additional physician organizations filed an amicus brief noting that gender-affirming medical treatments “are part of the widely-accepted treatment guidelines for adolescents suffering from gender dysphoria, and are supported by the best available scientific evidence… Denying these treatments to adolescents who need them would irreparably harm their health.”
Expressing similar sentiments, Frank Worrell, President of the American Psychological Association (APA), wrote that:
“This ill-conceived directive from the Texas governor will put at-risk children at even higher risk of anxiety, depression, self-harm, and suicide. Gender-affirming care promotes the health and well-being of transgender youth and is provided by medical and mental health professionals, based on well-established scientific research. The peer-reviewed research suggests that transgender children and youth who are treated with affirmation and receive evidence-based treatments tend to see improvements in their psychological well-being.”
“Asking licensed medical and mental health professionals to ‘turn in’ parents who are merely trying to give their children needed and evidence-based care would violate patient confidentiality as well as professional ethics. The American Psychological Association opposes politicized intrusions into the decisions that parents make with medical providers about caring for their children.”
We, the psychologists of the BCPA, stand in full agreement with the American Psychological Association and the American Psychiatric Association. Gender affirming care is in the best interest of the individuals that we serve and it is our ethical duty to provide such care.