USF Health follows Gov. Ron DeSantis’ request to send information about students who have sought gender-affirming care in the past five years to 12 public colleges and universities in Florida, senior associate vice president Donna Petersen said. said.
“We have been asked by the state to provide some information and we will respond. That is all we know at this time,” Petersen said.
DeSantis’ Office of Planning and Budget receives anonymized aggregated data on students diagnosed with gender dysphoria, age, and details of services used. This information from the university will be delivered by February 10th.
Andy Pham, a member of the USF’s Trans Student Union (TSU) board of directors, said most students fear what the request means for the future of healthcare access. He said the importance of transgender students receiving hormone replacement therapy (HRT) goes beyond its physical effects.
“It keeps people from feeling depressed or suicidal,” Pham said. give confidence to [antidepressant medicine]”
Medical services provided to gender non-conforming and transgender students, such as HRT, behavioral health, and other gender-affirming care, will be disclosed on anonymized displays. According to Pham, transgender students are concerned about how their data is organized and whether it could adversely affect their privacy.
The study also asked for information about plastic surgery procedures and referrals to other facilities, so the specificity of the information could tell who the patient was, Pham said. Florida Sunshine Act Allows access to all data provided by state universities, state funding to public universities allows DeSantis administrators to request personal health records.
Florida students are Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) compliant, but because the data is anonymous, providing patient health information without patient consent is not prohibited by law.
Blocking access is harmful to transgender youth because of the effectiveness of appropriate gender-affirming treatments, Pham said, and most treatments are recommended by experts.
“Even if you personally object, [trans access to healthcare]all major scientific and health organizations support allowing doctors to work with transgender people,” Pham said.
The effectiveness of preventive and positive care for persons with gender dysphoria is American Academy of PediatricsIf the governor’s Office of Budget and Planning health record request leads to restricted access to “non-academic” pursuits, it contradicts the stance of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
“Attempts to limit, challenge, or mischaracterize this potentially life-saving care as abuse is dangerous,” HHS wrote. Notices and Guidance on Gender Affirmation Care, Civil Rights, and Patient Privacy.
The Office of Civil Rights is responsible for maintaining and enforcing civil rights laws that ensure access to health care and prohibit discriminatory restrictions.of Notices and Guidance Documents From March 2022 Section 1557 Specifically, it provides protection against discrimination based on gender or gender identity and allows patients and families to file complaints.
According to the HHS notice, “Federally-funded covered entities may limit an individual’s ability to receive medically necessary care from a healthcare provider based solely on the sex or gender identity assigned at birth. To do so would likely violate Section 1557.” .
The Governor of Florida’s “Anti-Awakening” platform targets reforms and restrictions in several sections of the education system. Members of the TSU are concerned that the request is just the beginning of DeSantis’s larger project, Pham said, backing away from an inclusive effort for queer youth.
“Some of my colleagues have said that these ‘Stop WOKE’ and ‘Don’t Say Gay’ are very broadly written but very selectively applied.” Policies and laws may be introduced.”