Missouri Trans Clinic forced to cease services following trans healthcare ban

A protestor holds up a card reading "protect trans youth"

A transgender clinic in Missouri has been forced to cease providing services for minors seeking gender-affirming care due to a new state law.

As of 28 August, healthcare providers in the state of Missouri are banned from prescribing gender-affirming treatment like puberty blockers and hormone replacement therapy to transgender children and teenagers, under a bill signed into law by Governor Mike Parson.

While it was first understood that minors already in the process of receiving gender-affirming treatment would not be affected by this bill, this no longer appears to be the case.

Adults will still be able to receive gender-affirming care for the purpose of transitioning, but they will not be covered by Medicaid.

A protestor wearing a trans flag during a Pride event.
Transgender care for minors has been outlawed in Missouri. (Getty Images)

Any medical practitioners found to be in breach of this bill are subject to liability for 15 years after a patient turns 21. The law includes a minimum liability of $500,000, with a judgement that would be three times the amount of damages assessed.

As a result, Washington University Transgender Centre at St. Louis Children’s Hospital is one clinic that will have to cease operations.

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A statement issued by the clinic on Monday (11 September) read: “We are disheartened to have to take this step. However, Missouri’s newly enacted law regarding transgender care has created a new legal claim for patients who received these medications as minors. 

“This legal claim creates unsustainable liability for health-care professionals and makes it untenable for us to continue to provide comprehensive transgender care for minor patients without subjecting the university and our providers to an unacceptable level of liability.”

It continued: “Our medical practitioners have cared for these patients with skill and dedication. They have continually provided treatment in accordance with the standard of care and with the informed consent of patients and their parents or guardians. We are grateful to our providers for their dedication to their patients and their profession.”

Rainbow Pride flag and trans Pride flag wave in front of office buildings
The Washington State Transgender Clinic issued a statement to confirm that they would have to cease certain services. (Getty Images)

It’s important to note that, contradictory to consistent Republican efforts to enforce anti-trans laws that would block people from transitioning, every major medical organisation, including the American Medical Association, has opposed these bans.

Reacting to the news this week, Kim Hutton, a parent of a patient who had received treatment at the Washington University Transgender Centre, told St Louis Today that “this is all being driven” by Missouri politicians.

“I hope that they’re very pleased with the harm that they’re doing to transgender children,” she said.

“Obviously our children are not worthy of care.”