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Two student health centers at Seattle public schools offer “gender affirming care” for free to middle and high schoolers.
They are operated by Country Doctor Community Health Centers, a local nonprofit that says it offers cross-sex hormones and gender surgery referrals.
Country Doctor says it offers medications like estrogen, androgen blockers, and testosterone, including hormone therapy for adolescents and “specialty referrals for younger patients as needed.”
“We do not provide puberty blockers at this time,” Country Doctor says.
The nonprofit also provides surgery referrals for genital and other gender surgeries and helps obtain mental health letters of support for gender procedures and behavioral counseling.
“Our mission is to promote health in transgender, non-binary and gender diverse communities through ensuring equal access to gender-affirming medications and procedures, and training staff to be trauma-informed and culturally responsive,” Country Doctor states on its website.
It’s unclear whether every service listed on Country Doctor Community Health Centers’ website is offered at the nonprofit’s two in-school health centers in Seattle.
Parents Defending Education first sounded the alarm about the Seattle public school health centers offering transgender services to students.
“The Nova Wellness Center offers no cost comprehensive, trauma-informed, and gender affirming care, conveniently at the school,” the Nova Wellness Center states on the school’s official website. The Meany Health Center also touts offering its “medical and behavioral health services at no cost, conveniently at the school.”
Both health centers say they bill services to insurance if students have it, and there are never any co-pays to worry about, but they also offer services to students and families without insurance.
The Meany Middle School health center also says it is partially funded through the Seattle government’s Family and Education Levy. The Nova High School health center says it is staffed by a full-time clinic administrator, medical providers, and a behavioral health specialist.
Both school health centers say they also offer “reproductive” health care as well.
Seattle Public Schools has a policy stating that staff “should not disclose” a student’s gender identity to others unless legally required to do so or the student has given permission for their gender identity to be revealed.
“Further, when contacting the parents/guardians of a transgender or gender X student and it is unclear whether the student asserts the same gender identity at home, it is best practice to avoid using gender pronouns,” the Seattle school policy states.
Cross-sex hormones come with serious health risks. They can cause infertility, deadly blood clots, heart attacks, increased cancer risks of the breasts and ovaries, liver dysfunction, worsening psychological illness, and other serious conditions.
Hundreds of teen girls in the U.S., some as young as 12, have gotten elective, gender-related double mastectomies to remove their healthy breasts over the last few years.
Meanwhile, it is more popular than ever for youth to adopt new gender identities. An estimated 300,000 minors aged 13 to 17 identified as transgender as of last year.