Air Date: September 21, 2015
Host: Jim Schneider
Guest: Twila Brase
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Some presidential candidates are calling for a full repeal of Obamacare, others are calling for a replacement while still others are seeking a modification. This Crosstalk looked at the consequences of these possible outcomes and some new proposed rules for Obamacare that address transgender issues.
Commenting on these issues was Twila Brase. Twila is the president and co-founder of Citizen’s Council for Health Freedom. They advocate the protection of health care choices, individualized patient care and medical and genetic privacy rights. Twila is a certified public health nurse, she regularly meets with legislative officials and provides daily commentary on the Health Freedom Minute.
Under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) a new rule has been proposed. This rule (known as Non-Discrimination in Health Programs and Activities) will apply to all health programs and activities that get any federal dollars. This includes those programs that are issued out of the health insurance exchanges which in turn were created out of Obamacare and include Medicare, Medicaid, etc.
It works like this: Any individual who claims a gender identity must be treated according to that identity. This involves a person’s internal sense of gender which may be different from their sex assigned at birth (Jim noted that sex is not ‘assigned’ at birth). This means Medicaid programs or state programs such as Badger Care (Wisconsin), Minnesota Care, etc. would have to follow this rule.
Not only do you have to be treated according to your gender identity, you also have to be treated according to your biology. This means if a woman identifies as a man yet needs treatment for ovarian cancer, under the new non-discrimination plan, she could not be excluded from receiving such treatment
Public comments will be taken on these transgender rules at www.regulations.gov until November 9th of this year.
Twila feels that it’s imperative that we put the repeal bill (repealing the Affordable Care Act) on the President’s desk. Congress, via a budget resolution, has already agreed that they would use reconciliation solely to do just that. Now they’ve backtracked.
Twila would like to see a simple one-page bill that would repeal Obamacare because she believes if you have a replacement that you initiate at the same time, that gives both Republican and Democrat opponents hundreds of targets to go after. In other words, we may not get to repeal Obamacare if we have to replace it at the same time.
As this program moved along, Jim and Twila commented on the massively complicated ICD 10 medical coding system (International Classification of Diseases–10th edition) that’s going into effect on October 1st; HR 2126—The Cutting Costly Codes Act of 2015; Drug Enforcement Administration agents that have allegedly been accessing personal medical files without a warrant and more.
To respond to the proposed new Affordable Care Act rule involving transgender individuals you can go to www.vcyamerica.org and click on the special transgender benefits link. That will take you to the direct link to the regulations.gov website. Keep in mind that the deadline for comments is November 9th.