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Hospital slammed for pediatric gender change guidance promoting controversial practices

OHSU's Doernbecher in Portland(KATU)
OHSU's Doernbecher in Portland(KATU)
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Doernbecher Children's Hospital, a pediatric teaching hospital in Portland, Oregon, has come under fire over its guidance for kids interested in changing their gender identity.

The guidance teaches kids how they can hide their genitals, called “safe tucking,” discusses the use of puberty blockers, some say encouraging their use, and even refers children to “a sex-positive shop in Portland” where they can find “gender-affirming” products in addition to “sex toys, videos and more.” The guidance also says the shop is for people 18 years of age and up but that it offers appointments outside of regular business hours for minors to come in.

The owner of the store said in a statement to TND that minors cannot purchase "sex toys" at the store, and consent from a parent or guardian is required for a minor to enter the store.

Some of the practices discussed in the pediatric guidance have been heavily criticized by individuals who argue that – among other things – they are potentially dangerous.

For example, the guidance also provides instruction on the practice of “binding,” which is a way to compress a female’s chest in order to flatten their breasts. “Tucking” is the act of “moving the penis, testicles, or both” to make “the genital area look smoother and flatter,” according to the guidance.

Both present potential risk factors that the guidance also mentions.

“This is truly the death knell of ‘you do you and I’ll do me’ liberalism,” tweeted Spectator columnist Grayson Quay. “There’s no co-existing with evil like this. This ends when they lose.”

Doernbecher Children's Hospital touts “gender services” and “gender clinics” offering “a full range of services for transgender and gender-nonconforming children and teens.”

Among the services listed are pubertal suppression, hormone therapy and “gender-affirming surgery.” Psychological and psychiatric care for patients and families is inconspicuously listed under “other services” very briefly near the bottom.

"As part of its mission to ensure the health and well-being of all patients, Oregon Health & Science University proudly offers gender-affirming health care to patients of all ages, including children and adolescents," the hospital's parent organization said to TND in a statement. "Providers follow established, evidence-based medical standards, and employ a thoughtful, multidisciplinary process that involves both patients and their support systems."

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"Medical interventions are not provided for children," the statement also noted.

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