Last week, a group of Republican lawmakers sent a letter to Lawrence Tabak, the acting director of the National Institutes of Health, demanding answers about an NIH-funded study on transgender youth in which two study participants committed suicide, Fox News reported.
In the study, “Psychosocial Functioning in Transgender Youth after 2 Years of Hormones,” researchers examined 315 transgenders between the ages of 12 and 20, including 240 minors, who were given cross-sex hormones.
During the course of the study, two of the subjects committed suicide while another 11 reported having thoughts of suicide.
More than a dozen Republican lawmakers, including Senators Ted Budd, Rand Paul, and Marco Rubio, as well as Reps. Andy Biggs, Lauren Boebert, and Josh Breechen sent a letter to Dr. Tabak expressing “grave concerns” about the study.
They note that after two of the subjects committed suicide, rather than shutting it down, the researchers went on to publish a paper concluding that the study showed that cross-sex hormones “altered subjects’ physical appearance and improved psychosocial functioning.”
The Republican lawmakers argue in their letter that the participating clinics, including Boston Children’s Hospital, and some of the researchers who conducted the study “are outspoken advocates for conducting gender transition interventions on children.”
They accuse the NIH of funding research that will now be used “to further the fallacy that chemically transitioning children is safe and effective.”
Describing the study as “absolutely tragic,” Senator Budd (R-NC) told Fox News that in looking for a way to justify their agenda, the researchers showed that they did not care about the safety of children.
In the summary of the study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the researchers noted that the “most common adverse event” among subjects was “suicidal ideation” and “death by suicide.”
The Republicans are asking Dr. Tabak to provide answers to a series of questions by June 9, including if the participants who committed suicide were minors and if the participants and their parents were given the chance to withdraw from the study “in light of the suicides.”