‘Aligned With Our Mission’: Seattle Children’s Promises To Keep Operating On Trans Children


Mary Rooke Commentary and Analysis Writer
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Seattle Children’s Hospital doubled down on its “mission” to operate on children with sexuality and gender identity issues in a statement to the Daily Caller on Wednesday, even as pressure mounts on health systems to quit pushing irreversible surgeries on adolescent patients.

The hospital website boasts it is “the only pediatric academic medical center with fellowship-trained plastic surgeons who provide gender-affirming surgery in our region — Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and Idaho.” The hospital told the Daily Caller that despite increased tension, it plans to continue performing “gender-affirming care” on its pediatric patients.

We will continue to offer evidence-based gender-affirming care because it is lifesaving care and is aligned with our mission to help every patient live their healthiest and most fulfilling life possible,” a Seattle Children’s spokesman told the Daily Caller. “Seattle Children’s providers are specifically trained to care for the unique needs of adolescents, teens and young adults. This allows our team to offer personalized care that is tailored to meet each patient’s individual needs and goals.”

The “Surgical Gender Affirmation Program” at Seattle Children’s says it “treats teens and young adults” with gender identity issues through “complex procedures, including face and neck surgery, top surgery (breast/chest), bottom surgery (genitals) and body contouring.”

Although the hospital insists patients must wait until they are 18 years old to undergo genital surgery, including intestinal vaginoplasties that use sections of the bowel to make a fake vagina, the hospital says “a typical age is mid-teens or older” for other procedures, according to the hospital website.

Screenshot Seattle Children’s Hospital Surgical Gender Affirmation Program Intestinal Vaginoplasty

Seattle Children’s website list several invasive procedures it performs on its pediatric patients, including double mastectomies to remove the breast tissue, thyroid cartilage surgery to create or remove an Adam’s apple, and mandible contouring to change the shape of the jaw. (RELATED: Oklahoma Children’s Hospital Ends ‘Gender Medicine Services’ After State Threatens Funding)

The hospital provides resources for pediatric patients who experience common side effects of these irreversible surgeries, like non-functioning sex organs and infertility. In case the first surgery does not “meet the patient’s needs or goals,” it offers revision surgeries that “offer options to improve the results,” according to the website.

For infertility issues, Seattle Children’s fertility preservation program says it is the only hospital in the region capable of “remove[ing] and freeze[ing] immature eggs so they can be used later in life.” This makes “fertility preservation possible for patients who have not yet gone through puberty and for those who cannot delay treatment to ripen and freeze their eggs,” the Seattle Children’s website states.

The public denounced these procedures at other children’s hospitals in the U.S., including Boston Children’s Hospital which offered vaginoplasty surgery to 17-year-olds, before updating its guidance to reflect that “you must be at least 18 years old and meet criteria.” The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) arrested 37-year-old Catherine Leavy, charging her with one count of explosive materials – willfully making a false bomb threat. She allegedly called Boston Children’s and said, “There is a bomb on the way to the hospital, you better evacuate everybody you sickos,” according to the DOJ.

While defending these irreversible surgeries as “lifesaving care,” the hospital decried the public action against other facilities also operating on children with sexuality and gender identity issues in its statement to the Daily Caller.

“Seattle Children’s stands with the Children’s Hospital Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics in condemning all violence and threats against any hospital or institution or that provides evidence-based gender-affirming care,” a hospital spokesman told the Daily Caller. “As providers of this care, we are witnessing firsthand the negative impact this is having on the wellbeing of our transgender and gender-diverse patients and their families, as well as our healthcare providers. Above all, we are committed to keeping our staff, patients and families safe.”