Judge overturns Obama era trans healthcare protections

(Photo by Zackary Drucker as part of Broadly's Gender Spectrum Collection)

WASHINGTON — On Tuesday, a federal judge overturned protections for transgender people that had been a part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

The Hill reported that Judge Reed O’Connor in the Northern District of Texas vacated the regulation that prohibited insurers and providers who receive federal money from denying treatment or coverage to anyone based on sex, gender identity or termination of pregnancy and required providers to give “medically necessary” services to trans people as long as those services were the same ones provided to other patients.

The news site said that O’Connor is the same judge who last year ruled that the entire Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional. In Tuesday’s ruling, he said the regulation violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. 

The Obama administration had defended the rule, but the Trump administration has changed that policy. In May, the Department of Health and Human Services started working on revising the rule to weaken those protections.