norway did not make gender affirming child care illegal
CLAIM: Gender-affirming child care is forbidden in Norway
Numerous credible news sources concluded that the claim is false after conducting an analysis!
The nation’s recommendations for gender-affirming care for minors, which currently include non-surgical treatments but generally advise against surgery for those under 18 years old, have remained the same. Increased limitations on this type of care, though not a complete ban, have recently been proposed by an independent Norwegian healthcare board that is not connected to the government. Still, it lacks the power to implement the changes. The health agency in Norway said it is taking the suggestions under consideration but nothing has been outlawed.
In recent days, social media has shared a deceptive article to falsely suggest Norway has made similar changes to its laws, as Republican lawmakers across the U.S. ban gender-affirming care for minors.
“Norway joins Sweden, Finland, UK, Texas, Florida, Oklahoma, and Tennessee in banning gender-affirming care for minors,” reads one tweet that shared the article and had more than 81,000 likes as of Thursday.
The article was posted on SOTT.net on May 13, a website that has a history of spreading false information.
The text of the article is an opinion piece that was first published by the Washington Examiner two months prior, and it never asserts that such care has been outlawed in Norway. The headline on SOTT, however, had been changed from “Norway offers a step forward in eliminating gender ideology” to “Norway bans child sex changes, joins Finland, Sweden, and UK in rejecting gender ideology.”
SOTT.net changed the headline after being contacted for comment and acknowledged that the suggested changes do not include a ban by reputed news sources.
According to Thomas Berg, a spokesman for the Norwegian Directorate of Health, which creates national health policies, there are no restrictions on providing minors with care that is gender-affirming. Instead, a social media user’s post and the headline represent the advice of an external advisory board incorrectly.
According to the most recent recommendations, young people with gender dysphoria should first undergo an interdisciplinary evaluation by a group of healthcare professionals. Once puberty has begun, they may then receive treatment to delay it as well as estrogen or androgen hormone therapy, but not before the age of 16. According to the recommendations, surgical treatment is typical “not applicable” for minors under 18, but chest surgery may be necessary for exceptional circumstances with parental approval and after a thorough assessment.
Increased regulations for such care were suggested in a report published in March by the independent Norwegian Healthcare Investigation Board. The board lacks the authority to implement any of the report’s recommendations, and the report did not call for an outright ban on any treatment.
“It is not true that the proposals or implementation of the requirements suggested will represent a ban,” the board’s medical director, Dr. Stine Marit Moen, told the AP in an email. On the contrary, our report emphasizes the necessity of ensuring secure care and treatments provided in Norway.
One of the board’s suggestions is to label minors’ use of hormones, puberty inhibitors, and surgery as “exploratory” or “experimental,” which local LGBT+ advocacy groups claim will make it much more difficult for children to get the care they need.
This would require these treatments to be linked to research or a study, which would make it impossible for private and municipal healthcare providers to offer such care, according to Christine Marie Gentoft, gender diversity consultant with the Norwegian Organization for Sexual and Gender Diversity, also known as FRI.
According to the advocates, who cited Norwegian news sources, the Norwegian Directorate for Health stated on Sunday that it is debating whether it will implement the board’s recommendations.