Federal court says states can’t exclude gender-affirming care 

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The panel of judges voted 8-6 to roll back the policies of the two states. 


Even though attorneys representing both states argued their policies were based purely on financial reasons, Judge Roger Gregory wrote in the majority opinion that the restrictions were “obviously discriminatory.” 


“Because we hold that the coverage exclusions facially discriminate on the basis of sex and gender identity, and are not substantially related to an important government interest, we affirm the district courts,” wrote Gregory. 


“We further hold that the West Virginia exclusion violates the Medicaid Act and the Affordable Care Act.” 


Currently, more than a dozen states explicitly exclude gender-affirming care from state employee benefit plans. 


West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey (R) vowed to take this case up to the Supreme Court. 


“Decisions like this one, from a court dominated by Obama- and Biden-appointees, cannot stand: we’ll take this up to the Supreme Court and win,” Morrisey said in a statement.


North Carolina State Treasurer Dale Folwell (R) similarly called the ruling on Monday “untethered to the reality” of his state’s financial situation and said he would “follow every legal avenue available to protect the Plan and its members.” 


Read more about this ruling from The Hill’s Brooke Migdon here. 

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