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Transsexual Sues To Get Free Mammogram

October 18, 2013
Written by: , Filed in: Breast Imaging
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Jennifer Blair, a transsexual woman in Colorado who was denied a free mammogram because she was born a man, has filed a lawsuit challenging the denial.

Blair, 62, had gender reassignment surgery a decade ago, according to KUSA-TV in Denver. She told the station that she takes a synthetic estrogen daily:

That dose also does put me at an elevated risk for a variety of tumors, including breast cancer.

After noticing unusual breast growth, she sought a mammogram through Women’s Wellness Connection, a state-run health care program for low-income women. She doesn’t have health insurance. She qualified financially, but not genetically. The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention pays for the program, and its guidelines cover only clients who are “genetically female.”

“I was shocked,” Blair said. “I was hurt.”

Blair’s attorney, Sarah Parady, said, “It’s discrimination based on her transgender status. I think that’s pretty black and white.” Parady has filed a lawsuit saying the denial violates the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act.

Scott Robinson, a lawyer who is KUSA’s legal analyst, said federal law was unclear on the issue. He suggested that Congress needed to clarify with legislation “to determine how such individuals need to be treated, whether as male or as female.”

Blair did eventually find the money to pay for a mammogram and learned that she does not have breast cancer. She said she was suing on behalf of others who might be in a similar situation.

“I am a real woman,” she said. “This is about social justice. This is about holding public organizations accountable to do the right thing.”

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One Response to “Transsexual Sues To Get Free Mammogram”

  1. Radiology Daily»AlertArchive » Transsexuals Can Now Get Free Mammograms on February 10th, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    […] We reported last October on an earlier KUSA interview with Blair that first told her story. She had gender-reassignment surgery more than a decade ago, and her doctor was concerned about unusual breast growth. Blair takes hormones, a risk factor for breast cancer. […]