Watch CBS News

U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy In Miami To Address Gender Dysphoria, Lend Support To LGBTQ+ Community

MIAM(CBSMiami) -- U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy says there must be compassion for the LGBTQ+ community and he says he has spoken with members of that community who feel threatened by recent rules and regulations passed in different parts of the country.

Murthy, a graduate of Miami Palmetto Senior High School, met with health care workers at Jackson Memorial Hospital and was in South Florida for a listening session with LGBTQ+ youth and college students and was here for a commencement address at Miami Dade College.

Murthy told CBS4's Peter D'Oench, "I want to say as a doctor foremost I was taught that every person who comes to see you has value and has worth and needs to be treated with care and respect. That is true for the LGBTQ community as well. In my conversations with many in the past few months, many in that community do not feel valued and respected or cared for. They are feeling threatened by recent rules and regulations around the country. It's important that health policies be driven by medical professionals and health care professionals and evidence and data."

The state health department has addressed the issue of gender dysphoria where people have a strong desire to be another gender and there is a conflict between their gender at birth and their identity.

The department said current evidence does not support the use of puberty blockers and hormone treatment and surgical procedures for children and adolescents.

The State Surgeon General has rejected federal guidelines that recommend medical treatments for minors who question their gender. He has said they should receive counseling instead for their concerns.

Federal guidelines say measures like hormone therapy can relieve stresses associated with gender dysphoria and the group Equality Florida says measures for children with gender dysphoria can be life-saving.

Murthy said, "I think it is very important that we consider the importance of measures with the LGBTQ community who by the way have a high rate of suicide and mental health concerns. My belief is that America should be a place for everyone to feel they have a welcoming home, that everyone is welcome and as someone who comes from a family with generations of immigrants to this country I feel that no one should be left out."

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.