Discrimination in Health Care

The Affordable Care Act’s Section 1557, also known as the Health Care Rights Law, protects women, members of the LGBT+ community, people with disabilities, older adults, and people of any national, racial, or ethnic origin from being discriminated against by insurers or healthcare providers. This law means that insurers who receive federal funds, including by offering plans on state health insurance marketplaces or providing plans sponsored by Medicare and Medicaid, can no longer deny coverage for gender-affirming services, and must offer coverage for maternity and prenatal care. Insurance companies are likewise unable to charge women more than men for the same plans, or to decline to insure individuals because they have HIV or AIDS. It also means that health care providers can’t turn away patients because of their race or gender identity, and must make reasonable accommodations for patients with limited English proficiency and patients with disabilities. Finally, section 1557 means that if and when consumers and patients continue to encounter this type of treatment, they can enforce their rights in court and fight back against discrimination in healthcare. If you have experienced discrimination in health care or insurance, please contact us.