Unpacking Colorado’s New Guidance on Transgender Health

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) improved insurance coverage of gender-affirming care. But despite both federal and state requirements to cover services such as medically necessary mental health care, hormone therapy, and surgical treatments, insurers still impose coverage restrictions that result in discriminatory barriers for transgender people seeking health care services. To help close some of these coverage gaps, Colorado, with approval from the Biden administration, made changes to its Essential Health Benefits (EHB) benchmark plan, affirming and clarifying coverage requirements for gender-affirming care.

In a new post for the Commonwealth Fund’s To the Point blog, Katie Keith reviews the history and current landscape of coverage for gender-affirming care, including improvements made to transgender health under the ACA, persistent disparities, and Colorado’s new EHB changes set to take effect in 2023. The post highlights how Colorado’s initiative could bolster nondiscrimination protections for transgender people and describes additional policies that would increase health care access. You can read the full post here.

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