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February 21, 2001
Sex-Change Benefits May Be Approved
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city of San Francisco is considering extending its health care insurance plan for municipal employees to cover sex-change operations.

The Board of Supervisors and mayor are expected to approve the measure in the next couple of weeks, according to a report from the Associated Press. The extended plan would allow up to $50,000 in benefits to city workers who want to change their gender.

The move would make San Francisco the only governmental body in the nation to make sex-change benefits available, the story reported.

"I'm very pleased that we're doing it," board president Tom Ammiano said. "We have a noticeable transgender population in San Francisco, and many are city employees," he was quoted in the story.

The benefits would be available beginning July 1 and cover male-to-female surgery, which costs about $37,000, as well as female-to-male surgery, which costs about $77,000. The benefits would also include related hormone treatments and other related procedures.

Employees would have to work for the city for at least a year before they would be eligible for the benefit. Those wanting sex-change surgery would have to pay 15 percent 'out of pocket' and use a doctor in the city's health plan network. Using an out-of-network doctor would increase the out-of-pocket costs to 50 percent, the story reported.
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