Allan M. Josephson is a distinguished psychiatrist who, since 2003, has transformed the division of child and adolescent psychiatry and psychology at the University of Louisville from a struggling department to a nationally acclaimed program. In the fall of 2017 he appeared on a panel at the Heritage Foundation and shared his professional opinion on the medicalization of gender-confused youth. The university responded by demoting him and then effectively firing him.
AJ: . . .The lack of thorough evaluation is a huge problem. Most clinicians or most places won’t say that they don’t evaluate people, but I’ve sat through some situations where it was stunning, the cursory nature of the evaluation, and then after that time the patient gets hormones. I mean, it is, it is a knee-jerk response in many clinics, and I think you used the word “appropriate” in “evaluation.” What is going on? Why should a child declare that there’s something that they’re biologically not? That’s a fascinating intellectual question in what is going on here. But there’s a shutdown of any investigative kind of thinking. That’s a real problem. . . .
There are now over 50 gender clinics in the United States. These were unheard of seven or eight years ago. And they’re set up real, almost like — if I may use a crude analogy — a restaurant where a person comes in and orders a treatment. Doctors have always said — you give me the symptoms, and I’ll help you with what I think is going on for the diagnosis. But that basic process is being short-circuited by a “this is my diagnosis; this is what I have” approach. And literally they’re asking for hormones. And amazingly, doctors are going along with it in many cases. I think it’s a travesty of our profession.