[TAKE ACTION] You’re paying for harmful surgery on children?

Family Update | October 20, 2017 | Donate | View Online | Share:  Forward // Facebook


Should taxpayers cover child “gender-reassignment” surgery?


This week, the State Senate Banking & Insurance Committee voted 10-5 on returning to the longstanding policy of the CHIP program to exclude coverage for sex change (“gender reassignment”) surgery and services.


Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) is a taxpayer funded program that was set up to help children and families with incomes too high to qualify for Medicaid, but who can’t afford private coverage. Last year, Governor Tom Wolf unilaterally changed the state’s policy for CHIP to additionally cover gender reassignment surgery and related services.


Our Senators need to understand that coverage for gender reassignment surgery is bad policy:


1) It’s harming children. Many respected medical professionals acknowledge that “reassignment surgery” (“sex change” operations) has not proven effective for treating mental health conditions. This is especially true in the case of younger children who typically identify with their own sex after they go through puberty.


At 12 years old, Patrick Mitchell was diagnosed with gender dysphoria. But two years after taking estrogen hormones and growing his hair long, Patrick, now 14, changed his mind.


Don’t mess them up,” says pediatrician John Whitehall to 60 Minutes. “We have to acknowledge there are a lot of children who are confused about their gender identity. It’s a normal phase that they would go through. It’s not uncommon. The good news is statistically, they’re going to grow out of it.”


Even the Obama administration, in June 2016, cited inconclusive clinical evidence of the supposed health benefits of gender reassignment surgery.


2) It hurts taxpayers. This life-altering surgery is also expensive for taxpayers. The cost for one gender reassignment surgery can be well over $100,000. After Governor Wolf’s executive order to change the policy, the state’s estimated cost for the 2016-2017 fiscal year was $9.1 million.



HB1388 is legislation that reauthorizes CHIP for 2018-2019 and now includes this amendmentexcluding gender reassignment surgery and services. Encourage your State Senator to support HB1388 as amended. Click here to use our Citizen Action Center now to send your State Senator an email in support of HB1388 as amended.


Additional News Highlights


Misconception of “Separation of Church & State”


  • Harrisburg City Council votes down proposal. A plan to lease a portion of Harrisburg’s City Hall to Eastern University – who would invest $600,000 into the much-needed renovations – has been rejected by City Council due to unfounded concerns about the separation of church and state. “We missed an incredible opportunity that would have been a great benefit to taxpayers of Harrisburg and the continued economic development of the city,” Mayor Eric Papenfuse said. “I see Eastern as a Christian university…As a Christian university, they have the ability to make hiring decisions based on certain criteria. I don’t think that’s the same thing as discrimination.” Read more.


  • County appeals ruling for removal of cross in seal – Wrong to run from history, faith in God. “It’s not as if religion should be treated as poison in our society, but the judge felt that current cases forced him to rule against the seal,” says Randall Wenger. “But even current cases don’t require us to eliminate our religious history.” Read more.


Abortion is not Health Care


  • Pittsburgh diocese settles suit over birth control mandate. The Pittsburgh and Erie Roman Catholic dioceses have settled lawsuits seeking to overturn an Affordable Care Act mandate that would have forced them to provide contraceptive and abortion-inducing drugs or services as part of their employee health care plans. The dioceses, along with Geneva College and more than 70 religious organizations, sued over the Department of Health and Human Services’ mandate. Read more.


  • State Representative Rapp: “Wolf Pushes Planned Parenthood Abortion Agenda While Failing to Finalize State Budget” Thank you to Pennsylvania State Representative Kathy Rapp who recently wrote about Governor Wolf’s road trip for Planned Parenthood and the glaring need to end late-term & dismemberment abortion in Pennsylvania: “With a completed state budget nearly four months overdue and after missing the vast majority of state budget negotiations, Gov. Tom Wolf has embarked on a public relations tour to flaunt his support for Planned Parenthood, the world’s leading abortion provider. One of his recent stops included a visit to a Planned Parenthood clinic in Philadelphia, where more than 20,000 babies have been aborted since 2013.” Read more.


Problems with Legalized Recreational Marijuana


  • What has it done in Colorado? One of our sister organizations – the Center for Arizona Policy – has outlined some of the problems Colorado is facing after legalizing recreational marijuana in 2013. Read more.



Tuesday, November 7th – Election Day 2017

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