Today, the Trump Administration released its rule to eliminate protections against discrimination in health care. The rule interprets the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA’s) Section 1557, which prohibits federally funded health care entities from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability. Today’s rule change redefines what it means to discriminate “on the basis of sex,” including as it relates to gender identity and abortion. The rule also makes significant changes to language access provisions and the scope of who is subject to Section 1557 protections. If fully implemented, the changes will have a profound impact on access to health care for transgender people, transgender people of color, members of the LGBTQ+ community, people with limited English proficiency, and women. The rule change fails to acknowledge the nation’s discussion on systemic racism in America, and it is especially dangerous in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, when we need everyone to have equitable access to health care.
The Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation (CHLPI), Transgender Law Center, the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund, and the National Women’s Law Center have teamed up to fight this rule and we will do everything in our power to prevent it from taking effect. CHLPI is preparing an in-depth analysis to ensure advocates and patients have the tools they need to understand current and future implications of the rule change. Subscribe to CHLPI’s Health Care in Motion online digest to receive our more specific analysis in the coming days. For more information about Section 1557 and the Administration’s aim to eliminate anti-discrimination provisions, read this Health Care in Motion issue describing the rule as it was proposed last year.