Health Insurance Coverage of Recommended Gender-affirming Health Care Services for Transgender Youth: Shopping Online for Coverage Information

We assessed online health insurance plan indication of coverage and accessibility of information for recommended services for transgender youth (TY). Content analysis was performed for plans used at a pediatric Gender Clinic by reviewing information about coverage of puberty blockers, hormones, masculinizing chest surgery, and counseling. Transgender-specific exclusions and the time required for the research assistant to review each plan's online information were noted. No plan (0%; n=36) indicated coverage of all four categories of recommended services online. Forty-nine percent indicated ≥1 transgender-specific exclusion. The median time required for a research assistant to review online coverage information for each insurance plan was 50 min. Efforts are needed to ensure that online insurance information is accessible and updated in accordance with policy and coverage recommendations for TY.

Authors:

Dowshen N, Christensen J, Gruschow S