Transgender Women’s Rights to Healthcare

Transgender women receive unequal treatment when it comes to healthcare. Insurance companies lack the coverage for sex changes, cross-sex hormone therapy, and therapy for ones mental health. More information can be seen from this policy paper. One of the issues is that the surgeries and medical changes have been scientifically proven safe, yet  insurance coverage is still an issue. One of the problems with transgender women not being able to receive the medical care they need is that suicide rates increase. Transgender women resort to unsafe uses to obtain the medical treatment needed. Over 50% of transgender individuals have injected hormones that they got illegally. This significantly increases HIV rates as well as other illnesses. Gynecologists are being informed on how to care for these individuals and treat them. 

The educational transgender health care plan outlines steps to apply for insurance as someone who identifies as transgender. One of the issues is that the person is required to present the name that appears on their social security card as well as the gender that is found on majority of their legal documents. This can lead to severe mental health problems, because this means transgender individuals may not be able to identify as their preferred gender on their healthcare plans. 

The New York Times mentions how transgender individuals usually don’t go to the doctor often out of fear. They are worried their treatment will cost more or they will be called by the wrong pronouns. The article writes about a women who was given a male roommate in a hospital in Brooklyn. The hospital claimed they had no idea that she was transgender. This is all the more reason why doctors need more training and knowledge on transgender individuals. 

 A story was released  about a lawsuit from Lincoln Nebraska where a transgender women was treated poorly by the Nebraska department for Health and Human Services. This women requested from the health department for female clothes and for a private room so she wouldn’t have to share a bathroom. The department laughed at her response and moved her to a room where everyone could see her, doing the opposite of her request and instead making her living space even more public. These humiliating types of actions are increasing the feelings of being different or unwanted in transgender individuals, and it certainly does not benefit their mental health. 

Sources: 

Unknown. “Health Care for Transgender Individuals.” Women’s Health Care Physicians. ACOG, Dec. 2011. Web. 16 Nov. 2016.

Unknown. “Transgender Health Care Coverage.” HealthCare.gov. Federal Government, n.d. Web. 16 Nov. 2016.

Ellin, Abby. “Transgender Patients Face Challenges at the Hospital.” The New York Times. The New York Times, 2016. Web. 16 Nov. 2016.

Manna, Nichole. “Transgender Woman Alleges Discrimination from HHS.” Lincoln Journal Star. N.p., 11 Nov. 2016. Web. 16 Nov. 2016.

 

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