Today, Rachel Levine, M.D., FAAP, became the first federal official to be openly recognized as transgender in the Senate by a 52-48 vote. Dr. Levine became the Assistant Secretary of Health for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and has served as Pennsylvania’s Secretary of Surgery since 2015, handling many of the urgent issues he worked on as a pediatrician, professor, and head of state health officials. increase. From 2017 to 2017 he served as Secretary of Health from 2018 to 2021. Here are some of the key issues she will tackle in her new role.
Many of Dr. Levine Senate Approval Hearing It focused on the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and what she has done in Pennsylvania to deal with it. “Dr. Levine’s leadership was marked by clear, science-based communication at daily briefings when COVID-19 came to our state,” Democratic Senator Bob Casey said at the hearing. said in
Dr. Levine has shown he is ready to respond to a pandemic that disproportionately hospitalizes and kills communities of color. As demonstrators marched in masks to save black lives amid his COVID-19, Dr. Levine clarified That racism is a health issue. Health policy advocates consistently praise Dr. Levine’s understanding of the “social determinants of health,” including discrimination based on socioeconomic status, race, sexual orientation, and gender identity.
“As an advocate, I say, ‘Hi, we exist. This is the problem and why. She’s already there,'” said the senior director of the LGBTQ Research and Communications Project at the Center for American Progress. Sharita Gruberg told SELF.
About Reproductive Health:
Some of the same HHS offices that undermined reproductive health under the Trump administration report to Dr. Levine. Her work includes unfairly preventing low-income people and people of color from accessing abortion care, affordable contraception, breast and cervical cancer screening, and sexually transmitted disease and HIV testing. It entails a huge task of undoing the Trump-era web of health regulations that are now in place.
For Dr. Levine, remediating damage will be the bottom, not the limit, said Rachel Fey, senior director of public policy at Power to Decide, an access contraceptive advocacy group. “Having someone who understands the needs of the people who depend on these programs and the specific barriers they face is very important,” Fey tells her SELF. .
Members of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee did not question Dr. Levine on reproductive health, but her record looks promising. 2016, Dr. Levine condemned Republicans in Pennsylvania have proposed a double ban on abortion care after the 20th week of pregnancy and safe abortion care methods commonly used in the second trimester of pregnancy.
“I don’t see people in that position taking part in this kind of legislation all the time, so she understands how this kind of legislation is medically inadequate. I think that speaks for itself,’ tells SELF, the Center for Law. While many Pennsylvania officials have a history of opposing abortion, Dr. Levine and federal Democratic Governor Tom Wolfe made no attempt to cut off access to abortion during the pandemic. Some Republican state officials.
Dr. Levine will definitely go after the former president Trump’s promise End HIV transmission in the United States by 2030 and not engage in discrimination. “A lot of what the previous administration said about what it takes to really end the HIV epidemic was accurate, very accurate,” said Dan Bruner, senior director of policy at the Whitman-Walker Institute. told SELF. But federal agencies in the Trump administration routinely discriminated against transgender people and those most affected by HIV. [those] Effort. “