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CA Senators Promote Misinformation About Planned Parenthood’s Trans-Hormone Program

Last week, Senators Susan Eggman and Scott Wiener falsely claimed a mental health evaluation is necessary before Planned Parenthood will give out sterilizing cross-sex hormones to patients. They both made the false statement during a Senate Health Committee hearing,  after a witness said she was given a prescription for testosterone from a Planned Parenthood clinic after a 30-minute phone conversation with one of their doctors.

But Planned Parenthood’s own website says most patients can get cross-sex hormones on their first visit and “No letter from a mental health provider is required.”

The Senator’s comments came during a committee hearing on SB 923, a bill force all medical and health insurance personnel to attend transgender “cultural competency training” classes that only promote sterilizing hormones, puberty blockers, and cosmetic surgeries as treatment for gender dysphoria. One of the witnesses against the bill was Cat Cattinson, a detransitioned woman who once lived as a male, but changed her mind in part because of the terrible side affects of taking the testosterone Planned Parenthood gave her after a short phone call.

"After years of struggling with gender dysphoria along with diagnosed anorexia, bulimia, anxiety, and depression. I thought that pursuing medical transition and being the opposite sex would bring me happiness," Cat testified. "I received a prescription for testosterone from the Planned Parenthood here in Sacramento after only a 30-minute phone call with a doctor. ... No bloodwork, no therapy was required." 

She went on to say that a Planned Parenthood doctor gave her an approval letter for a “double mastectomy” without an in person meeting or a “recommendation that I address my other mental health issues first.” 

Later in the hearing Senator Susan Eggman corrected Cat’s testimony saying Planned Parenthood doesn’t hand out hormones to someone without a mental evaluation. “In order for someone to receive medication or begin any kind of transitioning process, they have to first have a diagnosis of gender dysphoria. … You don’t make a diagnosis like that without a few visits for someone,” Eggman said. “So someone who went to Planned Parenthood and received medications, would already had to have an evaluation.” 

But that isn't true according to Planned Parenthood's own website titled, "Gender Affirming Hormone Therapy" which says, "Before you visit, please call to make an appointment and request gender affirming hormone therapy. In most cases, your clinician will be able to prescribe hormones the same day as your first visit. No letter from a mental health provider is required."

Senator Wiener confirmed Eggman’s assessment that no one is getting transitioning hormones on their first visit to the doctor. “I have met people at UCSF about this and yes there are all sorts of protocols and different types of evaluations that people receive when they are considering transitioning.” 

Well, that is pretty clear that Senators Eggman and Wiener owe Cat an apology.

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