HARRISBURG — The Pennsylvania House of Representatives is advancing legislation to reauthorize the federally subsidized Children's Health Insurance Program after removing wording to prohibit coverage for gender or sex reassignment surgery.
The House unanimously passed the bill Monday and sent it to the Senate. The Senate had inserted the Republican-penned prohibition three weeks ago, sparking opposition by Democrats. The bill reauthorizes the program for 2018 and beyond. It currently covers 177,000 children in Pennsylvania.
Senate Republicans say Pennsylvania can't legally extend coverage for gender reassignment surgery.
Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf's administration says it expanded the coverage last year to comply with a new Obama administration rule. That rule is on hold in federal court and isn't being enforced by the Trump administration.
Separate legislation is now pending in the House to prohibit the coverage.