Beth Scott, a transgendered woman living in New Jersey, can finally celebrate after winning a case against the healthcare giant, Aetna after being denied insurance for a mammogram screening.
44-year-old Scott, who expected to be reimbursed for the mammogram two years ago, was turned down after the company told her that they didn’t provide insurance related to her sex change. Scott, who became a full-fledged woman in 2008, was told by her doctor to get a regular breast exam similar to any other woman her age should.
Many health companies including Aetna do not typically cover health expenses related to gender transformations. Yet, Scott and many others believe it’s a form of discrimination.
If transgender people are being singled out for denial of care that is provided to other individuals, this makes it clear transgender people have to be treated equally under the plan, said Noah Lewis, a lawyer for the New Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund. Hopefully this will send a message to other insurance companies they can’t keep making these kinds of denials.
After being denied reimbursement twice by the company, Scott had to threaten Aetna with a lawsuit.
She finally received an apology and a check for $385 dollars, a monumental win for the transgender community.
“I wish this could have been resolved through the appeals process and that the exclusion had not been misinterpreted,” says Scott. “I am hopeful that in the future transgender care such as hormones and surgery will be covered as is other medically necessary care.”