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A federal judge has struck down a Wisconsin policy that blocked Medicaid funds in the state from being used for coverage of gender reassignment surgeries and cross-sex hormone therapy for trans-identified individuals.
The ruling last Friday comes from U.S. District Judge William Conley in Western Wisconsin who sided with four transgender Medicaid recipients in the Badger state.
Plaintiffs - State - Department - Health - Human
The plaintiffs sued the state’s Department of Health and Human Services over a provision enacted in 1997 that barred coverage of “transsexual surgery.”
According to Madison.com, Conley argued in his 38-page ruling that there is “now a consensus in the medical profession that gender dysphoria is a serious medical condition.”
Plaintiffs - Case - Gender - Reassignment - Procedures
The plaintiffs argued in their case that gender reassignment procedures and hormone therapy were medically necessary because they were struggling with gender dysphoria, a condition in which a person feels there is a mismatch between their biological sex and gender identity.
Conley contended that if gender dysphoria is not adequately treated, it could “cause adverse symptoms, such as anxiety, depression, serious mental distress, self-harm and suicidal ideation."
Conley - Democrat - President - Barack - Obama
Conley, nominated in 2009 by Democrat President Barack Obama, reasoned that the state Medicaid program, which is fueled by state and federal funds, discriminated on the basis of sex under the Affordable Care Act.
In 2016, the Obama administration’s Department of Health and Human Services implemented an Obamacare regulation that required doctors, health care providers and health care providers and insurers to perform, provide or cover gender transition procedures.
Obama - Administration - Rights - Law - Discrimination
The Obama administration interpreted civil rights law that bans discrimination on the basis of sex to also include discrimination on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation. As a result, faith-based care providers were sued for not providing gender reassignment surgeries.
The Obama-era interpretation has been...
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