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VA backs off plan to allow transgender surgeries

Transgender veterans hoping the veterans administration would cover their sex reassignment surgery were dealt a setback after the administration dropped the plan.

This summer the US Department of Veterans Affairs proposed to lift the 17-year ban on the surgery but didn’t include a funding plan with the measure, so it was dropped by the Office of Management and Budget.

The American Military Partner Association called the withdrawal disappointing.

The decision comes after a  year of significant gains for transgender equality. Last spring the Department of Defense began to allow transgender troops to serve openly. In October, the military implemented new guidelines for transitional care for troops including gender-reassignment operations.

In a statement to the  VA says it will continue to explore ways to make a regulatory change when funding becomes available.