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NY's Gov. Cuomo Mandates Insurers to Cover Gender Reassignment Surgery

NY's Gov. Cuomo Mandates Insurers to Cover Gender Reassignment Surgery

Trans-cr

This makes New York the ninth state to require such coverage

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Governor Cuomo has issued a warning to insurers that they will no longer be able to deny coverage for gender reassignment surgeries or other treatments (such as hormone therapy) deemed necessary by a doctor. In a letter sent out to companies this week, Cuomo concludes that, "An issuer of a policy that includes coverage for mental health conditions may not exclude coverage for the diagnosis and treatment of gender dysphoria."

Previously, insurance companies could dismiss such procedures as cosmetic, which forced many to seek alternative means to meet the high prices of treatment. In addition to the growth of non-profits aimed at providing financial support, there has even been a rising trend in the use of crowdsourcing websites like Indiegogo and Kickstarter. Upon learning that some of his constituents were being forced to such extremes, State Senator Brad Holyman said, "Nobody should be in that position in order to embrace such a fundamental aspect of their personhood."

The move makes New York the ninth state to require such coverage, along with California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington, as well as Washington D.C. While dispelling the notion that the move will result in higher premiums, the state's superintendent of financial services, Benjamin M. Lawsky, added, "It will further solidify the rights of a group that probably weren't always being treated as equal to everybody else, and that's sort of fundamental to our system."

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