Secretary McDonough said that the move was "the right thing to do."
Published: 2021-06-19 10:17 pm
VA moves to offer gender confirmation surgery to vets

The Department of Veterans Affairs is moving to offer transgender veterans gender confirmation surgery

The decision, he said, will allow “transgender vets to go through the full gender confirmation process with VA by their side.” McDonough also referenced what he said were higher rates of mental illness and suicidal thoughts among LGBTQ veterans, and a fear of discrimination that prevents those veterans from seeking care.

“We’re making these changes not only because they are the right thing to do, but because they can save lives,” he said.

The National Center for Transgender Equality estimates that there are more than 134,000 transgender veterans and over 15,000 transgender individuals serving in the military today.

McDonough’s announcement is the latest in a series of moves by the Biden administration to expand protections and benefits to transgender individuals in the military.

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