Know Your Rights

Discrimination in Health Care

Posted on Updated on

The Affordable Care Act  (42 U.S.C. § 18116) prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity. This means that you should be treated by your medical provider and insurance company with respect and fairness.

Health Care for Trans* Patients

Posted on Updated on

Some insurance companies include in their policies “trans exclusions” — they will deny coverage for procedures related to transition. Increasingly, these companies are being encouraged — either through legal action, legislation, or advocacy — to change these policies.

While the Maryland Insurance Agency does not specifically ban insurance companies from denying coverage for transition-related medical procedures, it does confirm that insurance companies should not deny trans* patients coverage for other medical procedures.

To read the most recent Maryland insurance Administration’s most recent policeis on trans* pateints, click here. 

If you would like more information about filing insurance claims for transition-related procedures, or have other concerns about your access to health care, contact FreeState Legal Project. 

Trans* Youth Athletes

Posted on

The NCAA has released guidelines on trans* youth inclusion in sports NCAA-level sports. The  highlights of the NCAA guidelines are:

  • Trans* youth should be granted equal opportunities to play sports. “Once we recognize that transgender young people are part of school communities across the United States, educational leaders have a responsibility to ensure that these students have access to equal opportunities in all academic and extracurricular activities.” (3)
  • Trans* athletes do not have an “unfair advantage” over cis-gender athletes. In response to concerns that trans* athletes, particularly trans* women, have an “unfair” physical advantage over cis-gender athletes, the NCAA says that (1) trans* athletes do not transition for the purposes of gaining a competitive advantage on a sports team, and (2) this argument is based on over-generalizations about body type — trans* athletes are not automatically taller, faster, stronger, or more skilled than cis-gender athletes. (7-10)
  • Schools need to make reasonable modifications to school policies to accommodate trans* athletes if necessary. The NCAA provides guidance on how to modify school policies.

What if you’re taking hormones? 

  • For trans* athletes taking testosterone: (1) the NCAA institution may submit a request for a medical exception “prior to the student-athlete competing while undergoing treatment” at: http://www.ncaa.org/drugtesting; (2) trans male athletes may compete on male teams; (3) trans male athletes receiving testosterone may compete on female teams, but the team will be recategorized as a “mixed” team with at least one person of each gender. (12) 
  • For trans* athletes  taking testosterone suppression hormones: (1)   the NCAA institution “must submit written documentation to the NCAA of the year of treatment and ongoing monitoring of testosterone suppression”; (2) trans female athletes being treated with testosterone suppression medication may continue to compete on a men’s team; (3) trans female athletes may not compete on a women’s team without changing it to a mixed team status until completing one calendar year of testosterone suppression treatment. (12)

What if I am not taking hormones? 

  • A trans male (FTM) student-athlete who is not taking testosterone related to gender transition may participate on a men’s or women’s team.
  • A trans female (MTF) transgender student-athlete who is not taking hormone treatments related to gender transition may not compete on a women’s team.”(13)

Want to read the complete NCAA guidelines? Click here.