On June 2, 2022 the Agency for Health Care Administration (Agency) released a Generally Accepted Professional Medical Standards report related to the treatment of gender dysphoria. The report is in follow up to the Florida Department of Health’s (FDOH) guidance detailing the lack of conclusive evidence in recent directives and “fact sheets” issued by the Biden Administration and the US Department of Health and Human Services for the coverage of “gender affirming” care, for children and adolescents.

Based on the FDOH guidance and in accordance with Chapter 59G-1035, Florida Administrative Code, Agency Secretary Simone Marstiller requested that the Florida Medicaid program review whether treatments for gender dysphoria are consistent with generally accepted professional medical standards. Today’s announcement, outlined below, summarizes the findings and recommendations.

Following a robust review of available medical evidence and the assessment of five medical experts, including health care researchers who studied the quality of the evidence relied upon for “gender affirming” care, the Agency has determined that several services for the treatment of gender dysphoria – i.e., sex reassignment surgery, cross-sex hormones, and puberty blockers – are not consistent with generally accepted professional medical standards and are experimental and investigational with the potential for harmful long term affects.

The Agency’s report summarizes the scientific research about the effectiveness of treatment for gender dysphoria for children. Research found:

  • Scientific studies supporting hormone replacement therapy, puberty blockers, and sex reassignment surgery for treating gender dysphoria are weak to very weak.
  • The evidence showing benefits from hormone replacement therapies for gender dysphoria is very weak.
  • Scientific studies do not show that the use of puberty blockers improves mental health.
  • There is a lack of long term, follow-up studies after sex reassignment surgery.
  • There are no randomized control trials on the effectiveness of “gender affirming” care.

The Agency will now initiate the rulemaking process regarding the Medicaid program’s coverage treatments for gender dysphoria. Additional information on the rulemaking process will be published in the Florida Administrative Register. Additional information on the Agency’s findings can be found HERE.

The Agency for Health Care Administration is Florida’s chief health policy and planning entity. The Agency is responsible for administering the Florida Medicaid program, the licensure and regulation of nearly 50,000 health care facilities, and empowering consumers through health care transparency initiatives.  Additional information about the Agency is available via Facebook (AHCAFlorida) and Twitter (@AHCA_FL).