Publix: Cover Gender Affirming Healthcare
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Publix has always prided itself in doing the right thing like extending benefits to same sex couples, providing healthcare, stock, and retirement options to associates, upholding the integrity, dignity of associates, and providing a safe space for their associates. I have been with the company for 11 years and this holds true on most accounts. However, currently the Publix health plans do not cover gender affirming healthcare--from hormone replacement therapy to gender confirming surgeries. I came out as transgender in the spring of 2016 and have been met with camaraderie and acceptance, but, I am paying out of pocket for my hormone therapy and cannot afford the expenses for surgery. Both the American Medical Association and the American Psychiatric Association state that gender affirming medical procedures are beneficial and essential for some transgender individuals to live a fulfilling life. These procedures are not cosmetic but necessary for my mental health and well being, allowing me to live authentically.
I believe with Publix's history of championing the individual and embracing diversity, that covering gender affirming procedures under their health plans makes sense and is the right thing to do. Every week, I pay for my insurance with Blue Cross Blue Shield, but it goes largely unused because it doesn't cover the medical care that I need as a transgender person.
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