“In the past six years, Claire, an IT infrastructure engineer living in New York, has spent thousands of dollars on medical care that most Americans never have to think about. There was hormone therapy, hair removal, and what’s known as ‘bottom surgery,'” Benji Jones writes at Business Insider “And that was just the start of it. But it was all worth it, she said. ‘It saved my life,’ Claire, 33, said. (She asked that Business Insider withhold her last name to protect her privacy.) ‘My worst day now is better than the best day I had when I presented as male. I am able to exist without fear, without compromise.’ Like an estimated 1.4 million people in the US, Claire is transgender. She was designated male at birth, but she is a woman. And she’s known that, on some level, since elementary school, she said. It didn’t take long for Claire to realize that being transgender comes at a cost. By the time she came out in 2013, she was already struggling with what’s commonly called gender dysphoria, a form of emotional distress that results from identifying as a different gender than the one designated at birth. But for Claire and many other transgender people, the costs aren’t just emotional: Many are also financial. The cost of medical treatments can add up to more than $100,000, and they’re often not covered by health insurance. Plus, transgender people face discrimination in the workplace, which translates to unemployment rates that are as much as three times as high than they are for the general public.'” Benji Jones, “The six-figure cost of being transgender: medical care, surgery,” Business Insider.
Jeanne Pinder is the founder and CEO of ClearHealthCosts. She worked at The New York Times for almost 25 years as a reporter, editor and human resources executive, then volunteered for a buyout and founded... More by Jeanne Pinder