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9 of Gov. Cuomo’s top health officials have left: report



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At least nine of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s (D) top public health officials have either quit or been reassigned over the past few months, according to a New York Times report on Monday.

This comes after the state’s attorney general on Thursday said that the number of COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes was underreported by nearly 50%. At the same time, Cuomo is facing criticism for the vaccine’s rollout in the Empire State.

RELATED: Cuomo blames Trump ‘political football’ for his nursing home strategy that killed over 12,000

State health officials often learned about new coronavirus policies through the governor’s frequent press conferences instead of receiving help in shaping such policies, The Times reported.

Simultaneously, Cuomo developed his own vaccine rollout scheme instead of using a plan high-ranking state health officials were working on that stemmed from “years of preparations at the local level” dating back to the bioterrorism fears that cropped up following the September 11th attacks, according to The Times.

“The governor’s approach in the beginning seemed to go against the grain in terms of what the philosophy was about how to do this,” Dr. Isaac Weisfuse, a former deputy commissioner at New York City’s Health Department, told The Times. “It did seem to negate 15 to 20 years of work.”

New York’s health commissioner, Howard Zucker, told The Times that the situation is not the governor’s fault but rather the overall pandemic’s as the state faces “an intense period of extraordinary stress and pressure and a different job than some signed onto.”

“The Times’s point is several staff left — true, and many others joined the agency with the talents necessary to confront this new challenge,” Zucker added.

Cuomo has also downplayed the role of experts in combatting the pandemic.

“When I say ‘experts’ in air quotes, it sounds like I’m saying I don’t really trust the experts,” Cuomo said at a Friday news conference, talking about scientific expertise at every level of government throughout the pandemic. “Because I don’t. Because I don’t.”

Among those who have left over the past months are Jill Taylor, head of Wadsworth laboratory where scientists detect virus variants, Elizabeth Dufort, medical director of the division of epidemiology, the director of the state bureau of communicable disease control, and the official in charge of health data, according to state records looked over by The Times.

On top of that, The Times reports that the state health department’s No. 2 official left for another job in the state government while another official who helped oversee contact tracing is expected to leave the department for another state government job, too.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Nebraska woman who detransitioned sues doctors who facilitated removal of ‘healthy breasts’ when she was a teen battling mental health



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Nebraska woman Luka Hein is suing Nebraska Medicine, the Nebraska Medical Center, and University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) Physicians who facilitated in her gender transition when she was a teenager; Hein has since detransitioned.

Hein, who is being represented by the Center for American Liberty, filed the suit last week, for removal of her healthy breasts when she was a depressed teenager who struggled with mental health.

“Proceeding straight to breast amputation in a depressed, anxiety-ridden, gender-confused adolescent, who was incapable of understanding the lasting consequences of her decision, constitutes negligence for which Defendants are jointly and severally liable,” the lawsuit states.

Fox News reports:

Throughout adolescence, Hein struggled with her mental health and traumatic experiences, including being allegedly groomed and threatened by an adult man. She had serious mental-health struggles at age 13. By 15 she was diagnosed with “gender identity disorder” and put on a fast track to have her breasts removed, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit claims that despite Hein’s history, doctors rushed her into gender transition without considering her psychological comorbidities. It says the defendants used deceptive euphemisms and unscientific terminology to sell gender-transition procedures to Hein.

For instance, their use of the phrase “masculinizing hormone therapy” was misleading as the process does not heal the patient but does “inflict harm that causes malfunctioning and malformation of the teenage body and brain,” according to the lawsuit. Testosterone injections, which Hein received as part of her attempted sex change, can cause many negative side effects including high blood pressure and permanent bodily changes such as the development of an Adam’s apple, deepening of the voice, abnormal hair growth, and male pattern balding of the scalp.

The lawsuit says defendants were also negligent in other ways, such as in their shifting from a standard medical diagnosis to the “affirming care” model, which embraces a person’s gender delusion as fact and discourages questioning.

Allegedly one doctor, Nahia J. Amoura, was prepared to go even further. “About a year after starting Luka on testosterone, Dr. Amoura recommended to Luka that she surgically remove her uterus in a partial hysterectomy as the next step in her ‘transition,’” the lawsuit states. The hysterectomy would have permanently sterilized Hein and created hormonal imbalances that would have required long-term medical follow-ups.

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