March 2, 2015

TLDEF Applauds Introduction of Comprehensive Transgender Health Care Legislation in Pennsylvania

New York, NY - The Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund (TLDEF) applauds the introduction of legislation in Pennsylvania that would ban the discriminatory exclusion of transgender care in health insurance plans. Introduced by Democratic State Representative Mark Cohen, HB 304, the Transgender Health Benefits Act, would end the widespread practice of excluding coverage for transgender health care in that state.  It would require all health insurance plans – including the state’s Medicaid program to cover transition-related care, including hormone therapy, mental health services, and surgery.

Statement from TLDEF Executive Director Michael Silverman

“Transgender people suffer immensely when they cannot access medically necessary health care. Discriminatory exclusions for transition-related care in insurance plans keep transgender Pennsylvanians from getting the care they need.  Transgender people deserve the same access to medically necessary health care as everyone else.

“Health care related to gender transition is widely recognized as medically necessary by organizations such as the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association and the World Professional Association for Transgender Health. Transgender Pennsylvanians should have the same opportunity as everyone else to access care and live healthy and happy lives. This legislation is an important step toward ending health care discrimination in the state.”