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What We're Reading: Transgender Protections; Medicare for All and Single Payer; Birth Control Targeted

AJMC Staff
The Trump administration is considering narrowly defining gender as a biological, immutable condition determined by genitalia at birth; Medicare for All and single payer healthcare are suddenly popular, but what it means to the politicians embracing the terms are not exactly known; the Trump administration is expected to try to expand religious and moral exemptions for covering birth control in employer health insurance plans.

Trump Administration Seeks to End Protecton for Transgender People

In the latest effort to reverse to roll back recognition and protections of transgender people under federal civil rights law, the Trump administration is considering narrowly defining gender as a biological, immutable condition determined by genitalia at birth, The New York Times reported. The proposal would unravel a series of decisions by the Obama administration to expand the legal concept of gender in federal programs, including in education and healthcare. HHS is arguing that government agencies needed to adopt an explicit and uniform definition of gender as determined “on a biological basis that is clear, grounded in science, objective and administrable.” But writing in The Atlantic, James Hamblin, MD, said there is a “scientific implausibility and fundamental impossibility of imposing such a definition.”

 

Some Politicians Embacing Medicare for All, Single Payer Without Being Specific on Details 

“Medicare for all” and single-payer healthcare are suddenly popular, but what they mean to the politicians embracing the terms are not exactly known, according to Kaiser Health News. As Republicans sit on the sidelines of attempting to fix a broken healthcare system, more than 120 members of Congress have signed on as cosponsors of a bill called the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act, up from 62 in 2016. At least 70 have joined Capitol Hill’s new Medicare for All Caucus. But some worry the terms “Medicare for all” and “single payer” are at risk of becoming empty campaign slogans, because few politicians are speaking precisely about the differences between the 2 ideas.

 

Birth Control Insurance Coverage Likely to Be Targeted by Trump Administration

The Trump administration is expected to try again to issue regulations that would expand religious and moral exemptions for covering birth control in employer health insurance plans, The Washington Post reported. The rules aim to reverse an Affordable Care Act mandate that required coverage. The regulations were filed last week for review with the Office of Management and Budget, indicating that the administration is in the final stages of issuing the expanded exemptions. In December 2017, federal judges in California and Pennsylvania issued preliminary injunctions blocking a previous reversal from taking effect. The Trump administration appealed both injunctions, and the cases are ongoing. A hearing in the California case is scheduled for this week.

 
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