So much for the Hippocratic oath. The Trump administration is finalizing its plans to roll back Obama administration-initiated protections for LGBTQ and specifically transgender patients to allow healthcare providers to refuse to treat them based on religious objections. Trump officials say that two new rules are expected in the coming week or so.
The first rule would allow hospitals, physicians, and insurance companies to refuse to provide care or insurance coverage to transgender people on religious grounds. The Obama-era rule that interpreted the word "sex" in the nondiscrimination protections in the Affordable Care Act to apply to gender identity has been blocked by a federal judge in Texas. Now the Trump administration is backing the challengers and telling the court that it is rewriting the rule. "The United States has returned to its long-standing position that the term 'sex’ ... does not refer to gender identity," it wrote in a filing.
The second rule finalizes protections for healthcare workers who have religious or moral objections to providing reproductive health services, including contraception, and even vaccinations. Presumably objections to vaccinations have centered around the vaccine for adolescents and young people to protect against the human papillomavirus (HPV), the virus that causes something like 70 percent of cervical cancers. However, with the anti-vax movement increasingly becoming a politicized one, who knows what happens next?
Ostensibly, reversing the transgender protections is about providers concerned over the "medical risks and side effects" of transition-related care such as hormone therapy, hysterectomy, and reassignment surgery. But the bulk of complaints by transgender patients to the Department of Health and Human Services, according to documents obtained through a FOIA request submitted by the Center for American Progress, is that they were unable to receive general care, like simple check-ups and other routine procedures even unrelated to transition.
This is why conservative evangelicals loves Trump, why they can ignore the fact that he's Trump. He's punishing all the right people.