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Embattled gender clinic forced to hand over medical docs in Tennessee AG’s fraud investigation


Daily Caller News Foundation

Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) has been required to turn over patient medical records to the Tennessee attorney general’s office as part of an investigation into possible medical billing fraud related to its transgender medical services.

VUMC initially came under fire in September following reports that the institution was offering cross-sex medical procedures, including hormones and surgeries to minors, prompting a legislative push to ban the procedures. The attorney general’s office began investigating potential medical billing fraud by VUMC and related providers in September and started collecting patient records from the institution in December, a spokesman from the attorney general’s office told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

A VUMC spokesman confirmed that the institution was complying with the attorney general’s investigation into its transgender procedures, including the records request, in a statement to the DCNF.

“Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) complies with all health care privacy and security requirements established under both Federal and Tennessee law, including but not limited to HIPAA,” the spokesman said. “The Tennessee Attorney General has legal authority in an investigation to require that VUMC provide complete copies of patient medical records that are relevant to its investigation. VUMC was obligated to comply and did so.”

VUMC matched minor patients with transgender patient advocates as part of its Trans Buddy program. One VUMC employee boasted about how profitable hormone treatments and gender surgeries would be for the hospital, and in another video an employee expressed that health care workers with religious or conscientious objections to performing those procedures were unwelcome at VUMC in videos unearthed by the Daily Wire.

VUMC has denied that individuals with religious objections are forced to participate in transgender procedures.

Tennessee legislators passed a bill barring health care providers from performing cross-sex procedures on minors, including surgeries and drugs such as puberty blockers and cross sex hormones, in February. VUMC announced it would stop offering the procedures after Republican Gov. Bill Lee signed the bill into law in March.

VUMC informed patients of the document handover, which covered records dating back to Jan. 1, 2018, according to The Tennessean.

“We are surprised that VUMC has deliberately chosen to frighten its patients like this,” Brandon Smith, chief of staff for the Office of the Tennessee Attorney General, told the DCNF. “The investigation is focused solely on VUMC and certain related providers, not patients, as VUMC is well aware.”

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Republished with permission from Daily Caller News Foundation

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