Controversy in Peru over a decree that links transsexuality with mental health problems

The update of a decree issued by the Peruvian Ministry of Health (Minsa) in which transsexuality is related to mental health problems has caused a great stir in the South American country in recent days.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
14 May 2024 Tuesday 17:17
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Controversy in Peru over a decree that links transsexuality with mental health problems

The update of a decree issued by the Peruvian Ministry of Health (Minsa) in which transsexuality is related to mental health problems has caused a great stir in the South American country in recent days. Feminist and human rights organizations expressed their rejection of the update of the Essential Health Insurance Plan (PEAS) considering that it discriminated and exposed members of the LGTBIQ community to situations of violence by including them as a diagnosis of people with mental health problems. .

The government of Dina Boluarte, investigated by her country's prosecutor's office, wanted to clarify last Sunday its position that gender and sexual diversity are not diseases, nor a disorder, that should be subjected to reconversion therapies. She argued that the decision is based on scientific criteria.

The Peruvian ministry expressed, in a statement, its respect for gender identities, as well as its "rejection of the stigmatization of sexual diversity" in the country. He reiterated that a person's sexual orientation and gender identity “does not constitute in itself a physical or mental health disorder” and, therefore, they should not be subjected to treatment or medical care or so-called reconversion therapies. as established in a 2021 resolution called “Technical guidelines for the comprehensive mental health care of the adolescent population.”

The Ministry of Health added that the PEAS was updated to guarantee that care coverage is complete in mental health, a position defended by some experts in the field. However, other professionals and activists consider that this measure reinforces stereotypes and prejudices against trans people, and that transsexuality should not be considered a mental illness.

The discussion on this topic continues in Peru, with debates about the rights and health care of trans people, as well as the impact of this decree on their access to health care and their social recognition.

“In a context where our trans colleagues constantly demand to eradicate transfemicides, we are witnesses of hate crimes, conversion therapies that have come to be classified as torture and the fear of living in freedom due to LGTBIQ phobia,” he expressed. the feminist organization Demus on its social network account X.