Updated: Aug 9
New internal documents received from ECU Health reveal its plans to "become a nationally recognized provider in LGBTQ+ healthcare services and medical education."
by: Sloan Rachmuth
The debate surrounding gender-affirming care for minors in North Carolina has reached a boiling point. There has been intense discussion about an impending veto override of the Youth Protection Act. This would ban puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and surgeries for minors.
Republicans point to European countries severely restricting hormones and blockers for minors because lack of evidence pointing to the benefit outweighing the many risks of treatment. They believe that doctors and others manipulate children into choosing sex change therapies after telling them they were born in the wrong body.
Meanwhile, Democrats counter that these treatments are life-saving for many minors suffering from gender dysphoria and that ECU Health is only trying to help "marginalized" patients. They argue that Republicans are singling out transgender children to score political points.
Since Education First Alliance reported on ECU Health's pediatric Pride Clinic in October, a few Republicans have joined Democrats to deny its existence. However, new documents Education First Alliance obtained in response to a records request revealed ECU Health leaders are planning a comprehensive center for child sex change procedures. The plans include expanding their "Pride Clinic" to provide care to 100 new patients each month, offering hormone therapy and even surgery for ages 18+.
ECU Health's newly opened "Pride Clinic" is modeled after the radical Duke Child and Adolescent Gender Care Clinic in Durham, NC. The leader of that clinic, Dr. Deanna Adkins, has consulted with the Pride Clinic staff, as well as the broader ECU Health community according to the documents.
Adkins is one of the most extreme zealots on the child sex change scene. Back in 2016, she gave an expert declaration to a federal district court in North Carolina concerning H.B. 2, stating:
“From a medical perspective, the appropriate determinant of sex is gender identity. . . . It is counter to medical science to use chromosomes, hormones, internal reproductive organs, external genitalia, or secondary sex characteristics to override gender identity for purposes of classifying someone as male or female.”
Never mind that millions of doctors have classified people in this way since the beginning of time. Adkins' claim is similar to the argument that the Earth's flatness is a matter of opinion when it has been a scientific fact for centuries.
In a recent video with the North Carolina Medical Society, Adkins admitted to giving 8-year-old patients puberty blockers followed by cross-sex hormones. According to The Endocrine Society, starting young children on puberty blockers can cause infertility, low bone mineral density, headaches, hot flashes, fatigue, and mood alterations.
Adkins also claims to have treated 2-year-olds for transgenderism, which may explain why ECU Health leaders have their clinic open to all ages.
ECU's Department of Pediatrics, which serves as the home base of the clinic, is formalizing a partnership with faculty at Duke's clinic. According to documents, this partnership will provide puberty blockers and maybe surgery not yet provided by ECU's Pride Clinic.
When asked, ECU's Pediatric Endocrinology doctors refused to prescribe puberty blockers to children. The refusal by these specialists should have raised a red flag for those planning the child sex change clinic.
But it didn't.
ECU's Chief Pediatrician remains committed to offering dangerous puberty blockers to children, noting to rectify the situation for "future hiring purposes."
Now even the progressive New York Times concedes the dangers of puberty blockers in a recent expose They Paused Puberty, But Is There A Cost? From the article:
Dutch doctors first offered puberty blockers to transgender adolescents three decades ago, typically following up with hormone treatment to help patients transition. Since then, the practice has spread to other countries, with varying protocols, little documentation of outcomes and no government approval of the drugs for that use, including by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
But there is emerging evidence of potential harm from using blockers, according to reviews of scientific papers and interviews with more than 50 doctors and academic experts around the world.
During puberty, bone mass typically surges, determining a lifetime of bone health. When adolescents are using blockers, bone density growth flatlines, on average, according to an analysis commissioned by The Times of observational studies examining the effects.
Ironically as the oldest child sex change clinic in the world, Tavistock, was closing and facing class action lawsuits, planning for ECU's new project appeared to be going gangbusters.
The pediatric Pride Clinic that ECU Health leaders have planned by sheer force of will is built on shifting sand without serious medical evidence of any kind documents show. However, the wave that will sweep it away is gaining strength in Eastern North Carolina and in the General Assembly.
Learn how the ECU Pride Clinic markets directly to children in schools through its Safe Zone Training and how the program leaders are trying to partner to provide surgery: