Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara on Wednesday directed California's Department of Insurance to issue a legal opinion clarifying that, under existing California law, health insurance companies may not deny coverage for male chest reconstruction surgery for female-to-male patients undergoing gender-affirming care for gender dysphoria based solely on a patient’s age.
Assemblymember Evan Low, who serves as Chair of the California Legislative LGBTQ Caucus, issued a statement Wednesday applauding the decision.
“The state of California has always led the way on issues of equality, and this legal opinion takes a much-needed stand to protect the rights of California’s LGBTQ residents, regardless of age," Assemblymember Low said. "I want to thank Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara for his office’s careful consideration of this issue. Every patient, including those experiencing gender dysphoria, deserves to have their specific clinical situation taken into consideration. Discrimination does not have a place in California and should not have a place anywhere in health care. I also want to thank San Diego’s TransFamily Support Services and the Los Angeles LGBT Center for their passionate advocacy in helping usher in this vital legal opinion, which will not only improve people’s health but also their quality of life.”
Assemblymember Low was elected in 2014 to the State Assembly, where he represents District 28 constituents in Campbell, Cupertino, Los Gatos, Monte Sereno, and parts of San Jose. He is Chair of the Committee on Business and Professions, Chair of the Legislative LGBTQ Caucus, Vice Chair of the Asian & Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus, and co-Chair of the Legislative Technology & Innovation Caucus.