Attaining the highest standard of health is one of the fundamental rights of every human being; however, transgender individuals face significant barriers when it comes to basic health needs, including education, housing, and health care.
Lack of health insurance, health care coverage, or cultrally proficient healthcare providers is a problem for many transgender people in our state. TEA of Utah is working to ensure that Utah state policy makers, healthcare providers, and insurance agencies understand the needs of Utah's transgender community and take measures to ensure insurance plans include vital treatment options and solutions for transgender people.
Transgender Utahns have many new rights and protections under the Affordable Care Act, including:
- The right to not be denied insurance coverage or charged more because of past medical care or a preexisting condition, including gender dysphoria or gender identity.
- The right to clinically appropriate preventive services, including "sex-specific" preventive services (such as mammograms or prostate cancer screening), without cost-sharing.
- The right to coverage of health services (such as preventive screenings, hormone therapy, and mental health services) as long as those services are covered for other people on your insurance plan
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently proposed additional protections for the transgender community. Although these rules have not been finalized yet, transgender people can and should be aware of these proposed protections and check back here for progress. The proposed rules include:
- Banning transgender exclusions in private health insurance and state Medicaid programs, so more insurance plans could provide coverage for transition-related care. Requiring many health care entities to treat individuals in accordance with their gender identity in, for instance, assigning a person to a room or ward in a hospital.
- Prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sex stereotyping (i.e., stereotypical notions of masculinity and femininity).
If you face discrimination, you have rights.
We encourage you to share your story or file a complaint here.
Transgender people face a higher rate of uninsurance, HIV infection, and suicidality, among other health needs. Discriminatory exclusions and practices by health workers also limit access to medically necessary care for transgender people.
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights: How to File a Complaint
- Out2Enroll FAQs on Transgender Health
- National Center for Transgender Equality: Health & HIV
- Guidance on the coverage of preventive services for transgender people (page 6)
- Voluntary resolution agreement between Office for Civil Rights and Brooklyn Hospital Center based on gender identity discrimination
Federal lawsuit based on gender identity discrimination
- Proposed rule on Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act