Medicare Agrees to Pay For Reverse and Reverse-Reverse Transgender Surgery.

Medicare -  In 2014, The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) lifted a three decade old law banning Medicare transgender reassignment surgery coverage for patients experiencing gender dysphoria, an intense discomfort or mismatch with biological sex and gender identity.

However, a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) claimed the policy discriminated against gender reassignment surgery patients experiencing transgender dysphoria, an intense discomfort or mismatch with their reassignment sex and transgender identity described in in the most recent DSM-5 2.0 update.  Medicare officials agreed and decided last week to provide expanded coverage for reverse and reverse-reverse transgender reassignment surgery.

Transgender advocates hailed the new policy as a step in the right direction.  "We are happy with expanded coverage options, but we will continue to vigorously reject any limitations on surgical transgender interventions," said Silver Storm, head of the political action committee Right to a Transgender Medicare Life.

"I've got several diabetic friends from my bridge club who've had parts of the same leg removed over six times before finally getting the whole thing cut off.   As a transgender Medicare patient, it's discrimination to only pay for up to three sex change operations.  What if I need four or five or six?"  said Silver.

Medicare now provides expanded coverage for transgender dysphoria
A rash of transgender dysphoria cases last year helped convince Medicare officials of the need to expand coverage.  Quin Jensen, a 72-year-old transgender Medicare patient explains.

"Ever since I was a little boy, I've dreamed of living my life as a post-menopausal elderly woman. But after the surgery, I realized it wasn't what it was all cracked up to be.   After the surgeon gave me boobs that hung to the floor, I knew I had transgender dysphoria and wanted out of that body," said Quin.

In another case, 76-year-old Elm Tree realized she made a terrible mistake transforming into a male after finding out the average male in the United States only lived to 77 years old.  "After one of my friends told me women live five extra years, I told my surgeon to change me back, but it wasn't covered until last week.  Thank you Medicare for giving me another five years of life!"  said Elm.

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