VA Aims To Cover Gender-Affirmation Surgery For Transgender Veterans
Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough will back regulatory changes to allow Veterans Affairs health care to cover the procedure.
Biden Administration Moves To Make Gender Confirmation Surgery Available Through Veteran Affairs Health Care System
Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough is moving to make gender confirmation surgery available to transgender veterans through Veterans Affairs health care coverage. McDonough announced the move, plans of which were first reported by CNN, at a Pride event at the Orlando Vet Center in Florida on Saturday. "We are taking the first necessary steps to expand VA's care to include gender confirmation surgery -- thereby allowing transgender vets to go through the full gender confirmation process with VA at their side," McDonough said at the event. (Kaufman, 6/19)
The New York Times:
V.A. Plans To Offer Gender-Affirming Surgeries For Transgender Veterans
The Department of Veterans Affairs plans to offer gender confirmation surgery to transgender veterans, Denis McDonough, the secretary of veterans affairs, announced over the weekend at a Pride event in Orlando, Fla., in a major shift in available care for former service members. “This process will require changing V.A.’s regulations and establishing policy that will ensure the equitable treatment and safety of transgender veterans,” Mr. McDonough said on Saturday at the event, noting that the change would take time. But he said the surgical needs of transgender veterans had been “deserved for a long time.” (Karni, 6/20)
In pandemic news from the Biden administration —
Biden Boosts OSHA Virus Enforcement As Vaccines Herald Changes
Five months into the Biden administration, changes are beginning to emerge in how the federal government’s occupational safety agency is enforcing its Covid-19 worker-protection mandates. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has issued more than three times as many violations of the general duty clause, a provision of federal law, than it did during the Trump administration, according to a Bloomberg Law review of OSHA enforcement data. OSHA also has increased the number of inspections of workplaces where Covid-19 could be a hazard, even if an employer or workers haven’t reported complaints to the agency. (Rolfsen, 6/21)
Scoop: Fauci's Offensive Against "Craziness"
After becoming a top punching bag for the right, Dr. Anthony Fauci is defending himself with a sharp new edge, arguing that an attack on him is an attack on science. In comments to Kara Swisher on her New York Times "Sway" podcast, shared first with Axios, Fauci says: "It is essential as a scientist that you evolve your opinion and your recommendations based on the data as it evolves. ... And that's the reason why I say people who then criticize me about that are actually criticizing science." (Allen, 6/20)
America Is Ready To Return To Normal. Biden’s CDC Chief Isn’t So Sure
Now the agency faces its biggest test yet: loosening its public safety guidance as the pandemic recedes, while simultaneously trying to prevent infection rates from spiking in undervaccinated communities. Adding to the difficulty, the highly transmissible Delta virus variant is gaining ground across the country. “It’s very hard to separate the criticism of the agency from what we’re seeing in the continued politicization of the response,” said Ali Khan, dean of the University of Nebraska College of Public Health. "There continues to be this thread of partisanship. Until those political issues are relieved CDC will be in the awkward position of ‘They are going too far’ — or not far enough.” (Banco, 6/21)