Transgender woman sues insurance companies over face surgery

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Insurance companies refused to pay for "facial feminization surgery"

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File photo from inside a hospital. (KOIN)

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A transgender woman in Oregon has filed a $375,000 lawsuit against her insurance companies and her employer, saying they’ve discriminated against her by refusing to pay for facial surgery.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports Clatsop County employee Christina Ketcham has already undergone sex reassignment surgery, hormone replacement therapy and worked with a voice coach to reflect her gender identity.

Her doctors have determined that “facial feminization surgery” is medically necessary to continue on that path.

But the suit says from 2016 to 2019, Citycounty Insurance Services, which provides coverage to Clatsop County employees, and plan administrator Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon, have turned down Ketcham’s request to cover the cost of the surgery.

Representatives from Citycounty Insurance Services and Clatsop County didn’t respond to requests for comment.

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