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The Obama administration was inordinately preoccupied with transgender issues on Friday.
On the same day it issued a directive for all public schools to allow students to choose which bathrooms and locker rooms to use it quietly issued another Obamacare regulation.
This one, called “Nondiscrimination in Health Programs and Activities,” pressures insurers to cover the cost of sex change procedures which, through Medicare, Medicaid and Obamacare, could ultimately be paid for by the taxpayers, the Washington Free Beacon reported.
The rule “prohibits discrimination based on race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability; enhances language assistance for individuals with limited English proficiency; and protects individuals with disabilities,” the Department of Health and Human Services said in a press release.
Insurers and doctors are not allowed to refuse “health care or health coverage based on an individual’s sex, including discrimination based on pregnancy, gender identity, and sex stereotyping.”
The agency said in its fact sheet that denying services pertaining to a sex change would be considered discriminatory.
“Categorical coverage exclusions or limitations for all health care services related to gender transition are discriminatory,” it said.
Those services would include things like breast implants, hormones and the actual surgery, the Beacon reported.
The administration praised the rule.
“A central goal of the Affordable Care Act is to help all Americans access quality, affordable health care,” Sylvia M. Burwell, the secretary of Health and Human Services said. “Today’s announcement is a key step toward realizing equity within our health care system and reaffirms this administration’s commitment to giving every American access to the health care they deserve.”
While the rule doesn’t specifically demand any particular procedure be covered it could open up health care providers and insurers to lawsuits from people who believe they are transgender if they are denied such services, according to the Beacon.
Some, like former John’s Hopkins’ chief of psychiatry Dr. Paul R. McHugh, would argue that only services transgender people need covered are mental treatments as changing genders is “biologically impossible.”
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