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Do you, or does the state, direct you child's health care?

  • Published in Letters

To The Daily Sun,

The is the 27th report to you on what is happening in Concord in the Statehouse and related activity. I hope you find this one interesting, particularly if you are a parent.

Let’s suppose for a minute you are a parent of an 11-year-old child who is covered by Medicaid and one day this last July your child received a letter from New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) as part of the N.H. Healthy Families. This letter is directed to the child and not to you. It is a private communication from DHHS. It informs your child that effective July 1 a new coverage has been instituted and they will be covered if they so desire. There is no indication that your permission as a parent is necessary for this treatment or procedure.

As a parent, assuming your child let you know about the letter, a question arises: Do you or the state direct your child’s health care? You look into the situation further you find that despite an effective date of July 1, on September 12 DHHS is had a public hearing on the new coverage to accept public input on whether or not to provide the coverage. Crazy huh? Is this just to appease an already implemented plan?

I went to this rescheduled, sparsely attended hearing last night to listen to several very vocal advocates about the supposed wonderful advantages of having taxpayers pay for the new treatment and surgery. I also heard from opposition opposed to the services and particularly the way that it was introduced to children as effective in July and yet the proposed rule change is just now taking public input in September. While the treatment is available to adults, children are also covered and it was obvious this life changing treatment could forever change the child’s life in ways they could not fathom. And all of this potentially without parental input. Since last night’s hearing was only for public offerings, no answers were provided because even though the commissioner and staff for DHHS were present, no questions were entertained. Frankly the whole evening was enlightening and disgusting at the same time.

What you ask was the treatment proposed in the rule change by DHHS as part of Medicaid? It was surgical and chemical treatment for “gender reassignment.” That is for those individuals who believe they are trapped in a body that is opposite to the sex that they were at birth. Do you want your child to receive hormones or surgical procedures without your knowledge or consent? Again, the question: Do you or the state direct your child’s health care? As a legislator, it is unclear what I can do to affect this DHHS rule change but I will try.

Please contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or(603) 320-9524 if you would like to talk or offer your opinion on this report.

Dave Testerman

Representative for Franklin & Hill