The Department of Health and Human Services today issued a proposed rule revising certain provisions in a 2016 final rule implementing the Affordable Care Act’s nondiscrimination protections for patients. One proposed change would remove the 2016 definition of “discrimination based on sex” that included discrimination on the basis of gender identity. The proposed rule also would make changes to certain notice requirements that the agency explains are intended to reduce unnecessary burdens.
“Hospitals and health systems value all individuals they have the opportunity to serve, and oppose discrimination against patients based on characteristics such as race, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, or gender identity,” said AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack. “We have serious concerns that this proposal could weaken important non-discrimination protections, and will be evaluating its impact on the health delivery system. While we are carefully reviewing the proposed rule, our core value of providing service to all will continue to guide our care for patients and our commitment to treat all with dignity and respect.”