The Trump administration is moving to remove an Obama-era policy that protected LGBTQ patients from discrimination, Politico reported.
The health department is close to finalizing its long-developing rewrite of Obamacare's Section 1557 provision, which barred healthcare discrimination based on sex and gender identity. The administration's final rule was circulated at the Department of Justice, a step toward publicly releasing the regulation in the next few days.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services declined to comment on the possibility of a pending rule, and an administration official said there are no protections to eliminate, given that Texas Judge Reed O'Connor tossed the Obama-era policy last year.
Pro-LGBTQ advocates fear that it would allow hospitals and healthcare workers to more easily discriminate against patients.
"News flash Mr. President: We get sick, we need healthcare and we should be protected under law," said Human Rights Campaign President Alphonso David on the organization's blog. "Time after time, the Trump-Pence administration has methodically worked to undermine the rights and welfare of LGBTQ people by rolling back existing protections.
"Amid a global pandemicwhich is already disproportionately affecting LGBTQ peoplethe Trump administration's efforts to remove existing non-discrimination protections for the LGBTQ community is unacceptable, blatantly offensive, and cruel. We cannot accept an administration that continues to treat us like second-class citizens. We will fight this policy $ fight to get a pro-equality president into office this November who represents all of us."
The Politico article is at www.politico.com/news/2020/04/24/trump-team-moves-to-scrap-protections-for-lgbtq-patients-206398 .