A ceremony today in Cleveland officially marked the opening of the Department of Veterans Affairs’ first health care clinic dedicated to transgender service members.
The clinic welcomed its first patients on Wednesday, reports The Huffington Post.
Utilizing space inside the Louis Stokes Cleveland V.A. Medical Center in Ohio, this clinic offers primary care services along with hormonal therapy and mental health care. Currently, there are about two dozen trans patients among the 112,000 people who receive care at that facility.
According to the statistics compiled by the Human Rights Campaign, there are approximately 134,000 trans veterans, and an estimated 15,500 active duty service members are transgender, but they are still officially barred from serving openly.
The Pentagon, however, is working with the Obama administration on a policy review that would allow transgender service members to serve openly. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said in July he expected the working group to complete a study of how to implement such a plan within six months, meaning the policy change could take effect within the next month or two.
Click here for more information about the clinic at the Louis Stokes Cleveland V.A. Medical Center.