June 12, 2013 | by Staff reports
Vermont nurses win trans health care victory
transgender flag, gay news, Washington Blade

(Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

WASHINGTON — The Vermont Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals and a coalition of community organizations have successfully removed health insurance barriers for the state’s transgender community, the American Federation of Teachers reported this week.

The Vermont Department of Financial Regulation issued a bulletin that instructs insurance companies to provide medically necessary care regardless of gender identity, Federation President Mari Cordes said.

Thus Vermont becomes the fourth state where insurance regulators have issued bulletins clarifying that their state laws prohibit insurance discrimination against transgender people. The other states are California, Colorado and Oregon, in addition to the District of Columbia, the report said.

The Vermont Department of Financial Regulation launched a campaign to end health care insurance exclusions against transgender people when a member approached Cordes and told her that Fletcher Allen Health Care banned transition-related care in its insurance plans.

“It was heartbreaking to me,” the article quoted Cordes as saying, “that this kind of discrimination could exist in Vermont in 2012.”

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