Mexico is the first country to conduct a field study that provides scientific evidence that transgender is a condition and not a mental disease, concluded scientists led by Mexico´s National Institute of Psychiatry (INP by its initials in Spanish) "Ramón de la Fuente Muñiz" of the Ministry of Health of this country.
The conceptualization of transgender is included as a mental disease at the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) of the World Health Organization (WHO), with the results of the investigation it is pretended that transgender do not be part of the mental pathologies anymore.
This study conducted in collaboration with the Specialized Clinic Condesa in Mexico City and the National Autonomous University of Mexico, shows that the distress (stress caused by social rejection and violence) and dysfunction suffered by these people, who in many occasions lead to suffer a mental disorder, are a result of stigmatization and the abuse they face in different social spheres.
This was made public at a press conference presided by the director general of the INP, Dr. Maria Elena Medina Mora, who said that this study places our country as a worldwide leader in this topic.
She explained that currently the research is replicated in other countries like France, Brazil, India, Libya and South Africa, to obtain more scientific evidence to be presented in 2018 to the member countries of WHO.
She said that the protocol results were published yesterday in The Lancet Psychiatry, one of the most recognized worldwide scientific journals.
Dr. Medina Mora stressed out the importance of achieving the reclassification of transgender status, because will ensure human rights and the protection of their health.
The Coordinator of Mental Health Clinic Specialized Condesa, Dr. Hamid Vega-Ramirez, explained that the study was conducted in 250 patients in this medical unit, only public institution that provides health services to transgender people of Mexico City.
Among the findings highlighted that respondents reported that the first time they realized their transgender identity was during childhood or adolescence (ages 2-17 years).
They also expressed their experience with transgender identity in adolescence (discomfort with secondary sex characteristics, changes made to have a similar appearance with gender identification, and requests to be identified with the same gender).
They were also questioned about their experiences related to psychological distress, functional impairment, social rejection and violence.
Meanwhile, the INP researcher, Ana Fresan, mentioned that through statistical models was examined if the distress was related to transgender identity per se or to the experiences of social rejection and violence.
It was found that social rejection and violence were the detonators factors for distress and any type of dysfunction.
In her turn, the president of Mexico´s National Council to Prevent Discrimination, Alexandra Hass Paciuc, stressed that these scientific advances are essential to combat prejudice, respect for human rights and public policies design.
Finally, the director of Mexico´s National Center for Prevention and Control of HIV/AIDS, Dr. Patricia Uribe Zuniga, said that this work is to document and expand the little information we have on health in this population and will be the turning point to ensure the health protection of this social group.
To the press conference, assisted Doctors Geoffrey M. Reed, principal investigator for Field Studies to evaluate modifications of ICD 11 at the WHO Chapter of Mental Health; so as Eduardo Madrigal León, head of the Psychiatric Care Services.
Follow us on Twitter: @SSalud_mx