The University of California, Berkeley is adding two more options to the “transgender student services” covered under its student insurance plan: laser hair removal and “fertility preservation.”
The public university receives around $500 million in federal funding annually, which makes up about 19 percent of UC Berkeley’s total revenue, according to a Bloomberg report. Students are automatically enrolled in and charged for Berkeley’s insurance plan, which costs $1,415 per semester, unless they successfully apply for a waiver.
Adam Sabes, who covered the story for Campus Reform, joined Thursday’s “The Morning Blaze with Doc Thompson” to talk about the new services that will be available for transgender students.
While less than 0.3 percent of students on the insurance plan use the transgender surgery option, transgender advocates wanted to make sure the plan accounted for the “infinite” number of gender identities people can have. Laser hair removal and fertility preservation will be added as services on Aug. 1; fertility preservation involves treatments to combat the hormones people take to transition to the other gender, a process that commonly results in infertility.
Students can pay as little as 10 percent for the cost of in-network transgender surgeries. The student insurance plan offers hormone therapy; gender reassignment surgery; and breast augmentation and “female to male top surgery,” which essentially means a double mastectomy.