Recently I came across a post on a Facebook Group I am apart of. I wanted to share the post because it is something that often isn’t discussed in the world of transgender issues.
In more recent times, most of the focus has been of acceptance and rights, the political and social aspects I guess you could say. But what about the nitty gritty, you know, what are the real costs of transitioning and why aren’t health insurance companies, medical professionals and governments doing more to save themselves some money (yep, you heard that right, save money!).
I hope cases like Jessica’s (below) will steer a more practical, economic and far less traumatic experience for the tiny minority of transgender people in the future. Especially for transgender women, passing can be one of the biggest issues. Why are we not funding transitions that could actually slash the incidence of abuse, discrimination or death?
Here is the post from ‘Jessica’ who was kind enough to allow me to share this with you:
Thirty years ago I asked OHIP (CAMH) for gender confirming surgery. “NO” was the answer. My union pulled me out of work and I was put on PTSD long term disability – I had been beaten pretty badly on “coming out” (nearly kicked to death and went back “in”) but the resulting pension cost Ontario 1.75 million dollars. Now the case is close to going before the tribunal and my attorney has asked for “the other costs”. Just expenses to get my surgery $156,000 (it was badly botched) Really really really awesome economics eh? That’s a 1.9 million dollar “no” for $12,000 surgery….I would have continued working AND PAYING TAXES for the next 20 years at 15K taxes per year – that’s and additional 300K lost…. TOODAY….HIV in transgender women lead the top three HIV categories at MEGADOLLARS to treat, plus the ODSP plus the welfare plus the assisted housing plus the addictions treatments plus the incarceration (we are the highest per capita incarcerated) plus the lost income tax, plus treating the suicide attempts plus treating the depression and suicidality, plus prosecuting the drug trade perpetrators, For every transgender woman who asks for full surgery face etc, ($150,000) and is refused, it costs the province about $190,000 to fund the “no” and that is just for the first 5 years. long term is much more. (my best estimate STATS CAN refuses to keep those statistics) finding the complete data is extremely difficult.