Amid intense scrutiny over COVID, CDC provokes fresh ire with transgender 'chestfeeding' guidance
"In my opinion, the CDC has lost all credibility," said Kansas Republican Sen. Dr. Roger Marshall.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention attracted considerable scrutiny during the COVID-19 pandemic for its stringent lockdown recommendations and perceived lack of transparency in explaining them. Now, the organization has prompted a fresh round of criticisms after issuing guidance to transgender individuals seeking to breastfeed children.
The CDC website currently includes a section on "chestfeeding" and recommends that "[h]ealthcare providers working with these families should be familiar with medical, emotional, and social aspects of gender transitions to provide optimal family-centered care and meet the nutritional needs of the infant."
Another page states that "[t]ransgender and nonbinary-gendered individuals may give birth and breastfeed or feed at the chest (chestfeed)... The gender identity or expression of transgender individuals is different from their sex at birth. The gender identity of nonbinary-gendered individuals does not fit neatly into either man or woman. An individual does not need to have given birth to breastfeed or chestfeed."
Media publication of the guidance attracted immediate scrutiny from lawmakers and medical professionals.
"In my opinion, the CDC has lost all credibility," said Kansas Republican Sen. Dr. Roger Marshall. "A biological male filled with hormones and a concoction of other drugs that could harm a baby should NEVER try to naturally feed a newborn. When will the Left wake up and realize what they are doing to our country?"
"As a physician who has delivered over 5,000 babies and encouraged every mom to breastfeed, it is evident the CDC has placed politics and its social agenda ahead of science and the health of newborns," he continued.
Association of American Physicians and Surgeons Executive Director Dr. Jane Orient also voiced concerns, in particular highlighting that particular hormone drugs used to stimulate milk production in transgender individuals could have potentially adverse effects.
"We have no idea what the long-term effects on the child will be," she said. "A lot of people are pushing for off-label use of a drug... it's become so politicized that you can do all kinds of things for a politically approved purpose." An "off-label" drug refers to one taken for effects other than those for which it has received approval.
Marshall pointed to the same issue, noting the Food and Drug Administration has warned against use of one such drug, domperidone, to boost milk production.
"Also, the CDC is in direct conflict with the FDA for marketing a drug, Domperidone, for milk production. This drug is NOT legally approved or sold in the U.S. In fact, the FDA warns against giving it to women for promoting lactation," he stated.
Neither CDC webpage explicitly references domperidone, though one does more broadly recommend "[m]edication to induce lactation or avoiding medications that inhibit lactation."
Texas Republican Rep. Ronny Jackson, a former White House physician, addressed the matter on "Triggered" with Donald Trump Jr.
"It's ludicrous. These people, the ones that are physicians, should have their medical licenses taken away from them," he said. "This is absolute insanity."
"They wanted to take medical licenses away from physicians all over the country because they may have recommended... therapies that they didn't agree with. Yet, they're gonna tell you that a man can breastfeed and menstruate and tell you they don't know the difference between a man and a woman," he continued. "This is ridiculous. This is ludicrous."
Dr. Anastasia Maria Loupis, a prominent opponent of COVID lockdown policies, said "[t]he [CDC] has NO credibility left after 3 years of non-scientific “vaccine” propaganda. And now they continue with this nonsense."
During the pandemic, the CDC, in March 2020, recommended school closures for eight weeks instead of short, often two- to four-week closures, as some school districts were doing.
In addition, school officials, parents and others found other CDC recommendations confusing and conflicts, consider they were tied to fluctuating local case rates. And in August 2022, the CDC said students and school staff exposed to COVID but who remain asymptomatic don't have to quarantine but should wear a high-quality mask for 10 days, and get tested on day five.
Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on Twitter.