“As physician general of the state of Pennsylvania, I worked to remain aware of the latest science in a number of health areas. This allowed me to offer policy recommendations to the governor, to offer strong managerial oversight on behalf of the people of Pennsylvania, and to coordinate effectively with my peers,” Levine said.
“My question about the existing literature on surgeries for minors was asked in the same spirit as many of the other questions I asked in that role — that of making sure I was aware of the latest and most relevant data on an issue of public interest,” Levine said.
“There was nothing unusual about that exchange, and in the years since it occurred, the medical validity of gender affirming care has only been reaffirmed and strengthened,” Levine said. “It is important to note the standards of care for patients include psychological and medical evaluations and, if necessary, treatment and support for the young person and their family. Children who have not yet started puberty do not receive medical treatment — at that age, care focuses on counseling and being mindful of the needs of the young person, their family, and their school.”
CNA also contacted Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia for comment but did not receive a response.
‘A giant experiment on children’
Dr. Quentin Van Meter, president of the American College of Pediatricians — an organization of pediatricians that advocates for children’s health and well-being — criticized the email exchange. He told CNA that it is wrong for any doctor to be doing experimental surgeries when there are no long-term studies to support them.
Van Meter said the result of the doctors doing experimental sex-change surgeries on minors is that “the lives of what will be tens of thousands of children are ruined.”
He said that there are no long-term studies in existence to support sex-change surgeries, whether that be for minors or adults.
“This is a giant experiment on children,” he said. “Medicine cannot be practiced that way.”
Van Meter also took issue with Levine’s response to CNA.
Van Meter said Levine is wrong about transgender surgeries being “affirmed” by science, saying that “it’s actually been torn to shreds by science.”
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“It’s the most embarrassing, non-scientific facade in a very scientific environment,” he said.
The original publicizer of the emails, Twitter user Megan Brock, told CNA she gained access to the emails through a Pennsylvania Right to Know Law public document request.
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) is the latest hospital to come under fire after media exposés have shown that gender transition surgeries on minors have been taking place at medical institutions across the nation.
In August, Boston Children’s Hospital took heavy criticism when news broke that it was offering gender transition treatments and surgeries for kids. The hospital has since updated its website and says that only 18-year-olds qualify for “phalloplasty or metoidioplasty and for vaginoplasty surgeries.”
The website still says that the hospital will perform “chest surgery” on 15-year-olds.
In October, Vanderbilt University Medical Hospital paused gender transition surgeries on children after an investigation into the hospital was called for by Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee. Vanderbilt’s surgeries on minors — and the lucrative nature of its transgender surgeries in general — were originally exposed by Matt Walsh, an internet host for The Daily Wire.