Florida bans Medicaid from covering gender-affirming treatments

The new rule is Gov. Ron DeSantis’ latest step to restrict gender-affirming treatments. Last Friday, the Florida Medical Board voted to start the rule-making process that could lead to a ban on gender-affirming medical treatments for young people. And Florida’s Republican governor has grown increasingly vocal in his objections to such treatment.

The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Medical Association support gender-affirming care for adults and adolescents. But medical experts said gender-affirming care for children rarely, if ever, includes surgery. Instead, doctors are more likely to recommend counseling, social transition, and hormone replacement therapy.

A coalition of LGBTQ and health rights groups, including Lambda Legal, Southern Legal Counsel, Florida Health Justice Project and National Health Law Program, said the rule will leave thousands of transgender Floridians without critical care as they go. need it the most.

“Ignoring thousands of public comments and expert testimony, Florida’s AHCA has finalized a rule that will deny Medicaid coverage for all medically necessary gender-affirming care for youth and adults,” the report said. coalition statement. “This discriminatory and medically flawed rule will take effect on August 21, 2022, putting transgender people at risk of losing access to essential gender-affirming health services.”

The Florida Agency for Health Care Administration’s decision to bar Medicaid from covering these treatments began in April after the agency released a report claiming there was insufficient scientific evidence. to prove that the treatments improved health. The AHCA held a public hearing on the new language in June that drew over 150 people on a Friday afternoon.

The Florida Department of Health has also accused the US Department of Health and Human Services and the American Academy of Pediatrics of misleading the public into believing the treatments are safe.

The American Academy of Pediatrics, however, has stepped up efforts to protect transgender youth amid an increase in states imposing legislation aimed at preventing minors from accessing gender-affirming care or girls transgender people to participate in women’s and women’s sports.

“It’s critically important that every child has access to quality, comprehensive, evidence-based care — transgender and gender-diverse youth are no exception,” said Lee Savio Beers, past president of the American Academy of Pediatrics, in a statement earlier this year. .


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