Both chambers of the Maine Legislature approved a bill requiring MaineCare to cover gender reassignments, a policy that’s already in practice but is not required by law.
The Senate voted 23-10 on Tuesday to advance the proposal. The House approved the bill 75-65 on Friday. Further votes are needed before the bill goes to Democratic Gov. Janet Mills.
The Mills administration already added coverage for mental health counseling, surgery and hormone treatments for low-income residents under MaineCare, the state’s Medicaid program. The bill would codify that policy as state law by prohibiting MaineCare from declining to reimburse someone for “medically necessary treatment for or related to gender dysphoria.”
Maine’s actions come as a growing number of states seek to ban sexual reassignment procedures for minors.
Twenty states restrict the practice for people under 18, and about a half-dozen other states are considering bans for minors, according to the Human Rights Campaign.