A rule was issued by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) dictating that patients should have complete access to services provided by insurance. Even if their current gender is different from the one that is stated on their birth certificate, they’re entitled to complete service access.
Although it does not force insurance companies to always provide services to gender transitioning individuals, it does cover the possibility of transgender patients being denied of coverage.
The rule is specifically aimed towards insurance coverage of health insurance on gender transitioning procedures. Covering procedures such as vaginal reconstruction and bilateral mastectomy.
Treating people and clients regardless of their gender identity
The issued rule acts upon Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act, establishing that patients “must be treated consistent with their gender identity, including in access to facilities.” It was first proposed in September and it is to be effective by July 18th.
This comes in consonance with the latest controversies based on the use of facilities by individuals who identify themselves as being transgender. Public schools have been recently instructed to allow students to use the bathroom that they feel most comfortable in. This issue was also seen with Target, which issued a statement establishing that they will stay firm on their position of allowing transgender people to use the restroom that most comfortably fits their gender identity.
The ruling by the Department of Health and Human Services applies to both private and public sector. Its aim is to “help all Americans access quality, affordable health care,” according to Sylvia Burwell from the Health and Human Services.
Discrimination based on gender identity is already illegal on a federal domain. This Friday’s ruling acts upon the issue by letting LGBT individuals to stop being denied of proper transition surgery coverage. It is also known that health-care providers have abused trans patients in one way or another, specially in conservative states that are promoting laws against LGBT people.
Since the decision also applies on a public spectrum, Obamacare providers must also comply and provide coverage to transgender individuals. According to Chad Griffin, chairman of the Human Rights Campaign, access to health care should never be denied, specially because of someone’s sexual identity or orientation.
The Affordable Care Act has already been of enormous benefit for Americans and the latest ruling proves that LGBT people are each day consistently being considered regular people and civilians, as current legislation has started to mold itself to fit a very significant group of individuals.
Source: Washington Post