Updated: Oct 13, 2020
Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) within Health & Human Services (HHS) put out a notice to withdraw an Obama-era proposed rule on the treatment of same-sex couples in long-term care facilities.
Our understanding is that because it was proposed in 2014 and never finalized, the SCOTUS ruling in Obergefell addresses the core components and the withdrawal is not a significant and discriminatory action. It is also our understanding that the vast majority of long-term care facilities are already covered under Section 1557 which provides protections for LGBT people, married or not.
The real real threat comes from undermining Section 1557 or other actions related to religious exemptions and funding faith-based grantees who might discriminate.
What We Should Do?
The Trump administration continues to prove it doesn’t care about LGBTQ health and has made that clear in many ways, but protections under 1557 are still on the books and we need ensure by being vigilant that those protections are not undermined and continue to stand!