Washington Secrets

Medicare shifts course, no sex-change coverage for now

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Politics,Paul Bedard,Washington Secrets

National attention to Medicare’s move to consider paying for sex-change operations forced the arm of the Department of Health and Human Services to withdraw its plan.

A day after Secrets Friday morning reported that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services was moving to reversing its 1981 rejection of funding sex-change operations because they were deemed “experimental,” HHS pulled the plug. They even removed the website which detailed their plans.
 
According to reports, the department is going to let its appeals board determine if sex changes are experimental or not before moving to cover the operations. The department had just opened a 30-day public comment period on taxpayer funding the operations.
 
“An administrative challenge to our 1981 Medicare national coverage determination concerning sex reassignment surgery was just filed," said a spokesman, according to the Hill.  "This administrative challenge is being considered and working its way through the proper administrative channels. In light of the challenge, we are no longer re-opening the national coverage determination for reconsideration.”
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