Connecticut Requires Insurance Companies to Offer Sex Change Coverage
HARTFORD, Conn. – The Connecticut Insurance Department has directed all insurance companies in the state to provide coverage for sex change operations, treatments and counseling, reports state.
The Hartford Courant outlines that the department recently issued a bulletin to insurance companies throughout Connecticut, advising them to ensure that “individuals with gender dysphoria … are not denied access to medically necessary care because of the individual’s gender identity or gender expression.”
Gender dysphoria is defined as “the condition of feeling one’s emotional and psychological identity as male or female to be opposite to one’s biological sex” and is listed in the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. The bulletin distributed to insurance companies noted the APA’s acknowledgment of the condition and its consequential eligibility for coverage. It also pointed to a 2011 state law barring discrimination based on gender identity.
“Under these statutes, health insurers are required to pay ‘covered expenses’ for treatment provided to individuals with gender dysphoria where the treatment is deemed necessary under generally accepted medical standards,” it stated.
Connecticut Insurance Commmissioner Anne Melissa Dowling told the Courant that she wanted to start off 2014 by ensuring that the coverage was in place.
“As we were turning the corner into the new year, we just wanted to make sure every constituency was clearly heard,” she stated.
As previously reported, a number of cities and institutions throughout the nation are making the move to require coverage, and currently five other states in addition to Connecticut have mandated insurance companies to facilitate sex change treatments.
In November of last year, the San Francisco Health Commission approved a measure that utilizes taxpayer funds to pay for the sex-change operations of the uninsured, becoming the first city in the nation to do so.
“[It will] help ease the mental anguish of people who feel they are trapped in bodies of the wrong gender,” officials stated.
However, others opposed the statute, opining that those who wish to have such surgeries should pay for the procedure themselves.
“Taxpayers cannot afford this, as there are unintended costs and unintended consequences unrelated to the actual surgery, such as their longer-term hormone treatment, psychology needs and other longer term health issues,” said San Francisco resident Thomas Moyer.
A number of colleges and universities have likewise decided to offer coverage to staff and students. As previously reported, Brown University in historic Providence, Rhode Island announced earlier this year that it would adjust its student health insurance plan to now cover “sexual reassignment surgeries” and 14 types of treatments for students desiring to switch genders.
“God help us. I guess this is what moral collapse looks like,” commented one concerned reader, who remained anonymous. “Then good riddance to your ‘morality,’” replied another identified as KN.
Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut also extended the coverage to students this past April—but with opposition.
“[T]he reason why Yale shouldn’t pay for this is the same reason why I am not covered by Yale for all the plastic and cosmetic surgery I want,” commented one student who named Eli. “It is not medically necessary.”