- Dane County Trans Health Group

Dane County Trans Health group works to support full health for trans people. This includes all trans people and all forms of health. Health means having access to full health care for all trans and non-trans related needs, living free from oppression such as racism, hetero-patriarchy or ableism, and having basic needs met such as housing and food justice.   

Our main work for the past two years has been to push for trans health care for Dane County employees. We have been successful in getting this included in the County’s 3 year contract starting in 2017 with Dean Health Care.  There is still some work we will do to push for it to be a bit of a better policy.  However, the way it stands, it will give care for approximately 3,000 employees and force local HMO's and other insurance providers to develop a plan to propose. This not only removes exclusions (ie hormone replacement therapy, psychotherapy), but covers up to $25,000 in benefits for surgeries and other care.

This gives room for other organizations we have been working with on the project, to go to their insurance companies they have been requesting trans health care from and say, now that you have had to create a plan, we want a version for our employees.  We will be partnering with various organizations to broaden the reach of trans healthcare in Dane County and Wisconsin.

Next steps include pushing for the largest local employers including big businesses and the City of Madison to incorporate this care in their policies. Also, other small Queer and Trans and social justice focused non-profits as a way to shift the culture. We are also looking into pushing for Medicaid changes.

We would like to extend this to addressing the coverage crisis in jails for trans people. We do this work in the framework of universal health care for all, knowing that trans people are disproportionately low income and incarcerated, and need not only what is considered “trans”care, but basic care such as treatment for heart disease, OBGYN, and diabetes. Addressing this overall disparity in health care coverage is part of addressing trans health disparities.

There is a continued need to push against the Department of Corrections for probation officers having the ability to make a rule of probation for multiple trans women to not wear “women's” or “feminine” clothing. We have gotten this rule changed for one person due to public pressure from a coalition of groups, but we want to make sure that this type of rule doesn’t affect any other trans people.

(Submitted by  zhaukeness@gmail.com)