The Arkansas House of Representatives passed a bill on Wednesday to make it easier to sue doctors who provide gender-affirming care for minors.
The new legislation would make it possible for a person to sue up to 15 years after procedures of gender-affirming care of anyone under 18 years old.
Arkansas House passes malpractice bill for youth trans procedures https://t.co/bH3EJPExPI
— Fox News Politics (@foxnewspolitics) March 9, 2023
"The measure advanced as a federal judge is considering whether to strike down a state law he's temporarily blocked that would prohibit doctors from providing gender-affirming hormone therapy or puberty blockers to anyone under 18 — or referring them to other doctors who can provide that care. No gender-affirming surgery is performed on minors in the state," Fox News reported.
"Republican Rep. Mary Bentley, the bill's House sponsor, said the measure 'provides much needed safeguards before life-altering medical treatment can begin,'" it added.
The bill will now go to the desk of Republican Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders who is expected to sign it.
The bill is headed to @SarahHuckabee's desk. House sponsor @MaryBentleyAR said it is intended to provide minors considering transition procedures with extra time to seek psychiatric care. #ARNews #arpxhttps://t.co/EO37elAS3U
— AR Democrat-Gazette (@ArkansasOnline) March 8, 2023
"The current statute of limitations for most medical malpractice cases in Arkansas is two years, according to state law," the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported.
"Since state law requires medical providers to keep records for minors for only six years following the conclusion of treatment, Hudson said doctors could find themselves facing lawsuits without access to records related to the case," it added.
The bill is among several passed nationwide concerning the issue of gender-affirming care or sex change surgeries among minors.
In addition to Arkansas, other states such as Oklahoma have banned sex change operations for anyone under 18.
The new bills come as transgender activists have pushed for new efforts to increase access for gender-affirming care while conservatives have largely pushed back with increased restrictions.