General views of Kaiser Permanente Hollywood Medial Offices on June 22, 2022
Photo by AaronP/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

News and Analysis

Medical Group Being Sued By Chloe Cole Isn’t Shy About Its Transgender Procedures On Minors

As the transgender movement has become more and more prevalent in American politics and society, the issue of whether minors should be allowed to undergo life-altering medical procedures as part of the “transition” process has become a flashpoint issue. The legacy media, academia, and even the medical field are largely dominated by those who proclaim that these procedures are both a positive step toward affirming these children’s professed identities and a necessary measure to prevent an epidemic of suicides among trans-identifying adolescents.

But a growing number of people are speaking out about these procedures, not the least of which have been those who experienced the transition process as children but have since regretted it — known colloquially as de-transitioners. One of the most prominent de-transitioners to speak out passionately against transgender medical procedures on children has been Chloe Cole.

Cole, now 18, began to transition at age 13 and received care at Kaiser Permanente hospitals in California, where she was given puberty blockers, hormone treatment, and a double mastectomy. When she was 17, Cole decided that she no longer identified as a male and has since spoken out about her experiences during and after the transition process.

In late February 2023, Cole announced that she was suing Kaiser Permanente for its role in facilitating her transition, accusing the medical group of medical negligence in providing chemical and surgical sex change interventions to Cole. The initial intent to sue letter, sent in November 2022, said that the defendants coerced Cole and her parents into the gender transition process by telling them that her gender dysphoria would not go away unless Cole underwent gender transition and that Cole was at high risk for suicide if they did not go through with the interventions.

“My teenage life has been the culmination of excruciating pain, regret, and most importantly injustice,” Cole said. “I have been emotionally and physically damaged and stunted by so-called medical professionals in my most important developmental period. I was butchered by an institution that we trust more than anything else in our lives.”

Kaiser Permanente is the largest not-for-profit health care provider in the country and the fourth largest health care provider by net patient revenue — over $21 billion. The consortium runs 39 hospitals and over 600 medical facilities. It provides services for almost 13 million people in eight states and the District of Columbia. Cole’s case is not an isolated incident under Kaiser Permanente’s health plan. In fact, the group has been involved in facilitating children’s gender transitions for years.

Kaiser medical facilities were a part of the transgender surgery boom of the 2010s, with one of its hospitals in Oakland seeing a massive spike in top surgeries — the masculinization (often by mastectomy) or feminization of the chest area. The Kaiser Permanente Oakland hospital performed five top surgeries on teens aged 13 to 18 in 2013, but carried out 70 in 2019 — a 1,300% increase in only six years.

On its website, Kaiser Permanente boasts that it is “a nationally recognized leader in LGBTQ+ health care equality, providing a wide range of services including mental health, hormone treatment, and surgical procedures to help transgender and nonbinary individuals achieve their gender-affirming goals.”

Under its “Gender Care Youth Services” tab, Kaiser notes its services include:

  • Counseling and therapy groups for youth and their families
  • Puberty blocking and hormone therapy
  • Sexual and reproductive health care
  • Hair removal
  • Voice therapy
  • Chest masculinizing mastectomy (top surgery) evaluations and procedures

Under its Community Resources section, Kaiser lists several organizations that have pushed radical gender ideology. One such organization is The Trevor Project, listed on Kaiser’s website as a “crisis intervention hotline” for transgender youth. The Trevor Project supports children socially “transitioning” and undergoing transgender procedures. The group also runs a chat room, called the Crisis Text Line, for young people that reportedly allows sexually explicit conversations, according to the watchdog group American Accountability Foundation.

Another group promoted by Kaiser under its “Health, Legal, and Advocacy Resources” tab is the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH), the leading transgender health association. In September 2022, the organization updated its care guidelines to remove minimal age recommendations for minors to obtain puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and surgeries. It also eliminated a chapter about ethics and added a “Eunuch” gender identity category.

An author of the updated guidelines, Dr. Ren Massey, said during a live-streamed conference that calling Child Protective Services is a “resource” for clinicians to “enforce the need for affirmation by parents” and suggested that hinting at a call to CPS could be used to get parents to cooperate.

WPATH guidelines are considered the gold standard for the field of health care for those diagnosed with gender dysphoria, and are widely used in hospitals and clinics across the U.S., Canada, and the U.K., as previously reported. WPATH guidelines are highly influential to major medical groups, including the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Psychological Association.

Cole revealed to multiple medical care providers that she was experiencing mental health issues, including “social anxiety” and a depressive mood, just before she began to transition, according to the lawsuit. The first doctor she visited, in November 2017, advised against hormone therapy because of Cole’s age, but a second doctor, who Cole visited in December 2017, supported the transition. The letter argues that doctors ignored Cole’s mental health issues in favor of pushing her through the transition process.

Kaiser’s approach to mental health services has been the subject of frequent investigation from state authorities in California.

In 2013, California’s Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) hit Kaiser Permanente with a $4 million fine, the second highest fine ever levied by the agency, for failing to provide adequate mental health services for patients under its Kaiser Health Foundation Health Plan. Routine follow-up surveys conducted by the department in 2015 and 2017 found that patients still lacked access to timely mental health services. The DMHC informed Kaiser Permanente in May 2022 that it would once again probe its mental health services after the department’s “help center received a 20% increase in behavioral health complaints for Kaiser in 2021 compared to 2020,” according to a DMHC spokesperson.

Kaiser Permanente is heavily involved in the booming industry of medically transitioning children. It boasts about being a leader in the field on its website and promotes organizations that push radical gender ideology. As more and more voices continue to speak out against transgender medical procedures being performed on children, Kaiser Permanente’s practices will most likely come under even more scrutiny.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a free hotline for individuals in crisis or distress or for those looking to help someone else. It is available 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Medical Group Being Sued By Chloe Cole Isn’t Shy About Its Transgender Procedures On Minors