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Gender-Affirming Health Care

As of August 18, 2013, the USC Student Health Insurance Plan will cover certain gender-affirming medical needs; coverage includes clinician visits, medication, surgeries, diagnostic testing for pre-op, and more. For more specific health insurance coverage information, please visit Aetna Student Health. For additional information about gender-affirming care health benefits, please email

Medical Services at Engemann Student Health Center

Every transgender and nonbinary person has a different story and may be at a different stage in their transition with different needs and expectations. For that reason, USC Student Health strongly recommends that all patients make an appointment with a primary care clinician with experience in gender-affirming care so that they can get to know you, review your medical history, and work with you to get the assistance that you need. You may schedule an appointment online or call the appointment office. To schedule with Dr. Pinanong, please feel free to email her directly at

The Gender Care Team at USC Student Health has a special interest and training in gender-affirming health care inquiries and referrals:

  • Haley Clause, WHNP (she/her/hers), specialist – transgender health  
  • Debbie Hansen, RN (she/her/hers), care coordination lead & health insurance (direct line: 213-740-2180)
  • Trudy Kao, FNP (she/her/hers) – specialist – transgender health
  • Dr. Patty Pinanong, MD (she/her/hers) – specialist, transgender health
  • Annamae Sax (they/she), LGBTQ+ Advocate and Violence Prevention Educator

More Information about Medical Services, Counseling Services, and Health Insurance

Please check out USC Student Health’s Gender-Affirming Care webpage for more details about medical services (i.e., hormones, surgery, medical team), counseling services (i.e., Counseling and Mental Health team, support groups), and any health insurance questions.

USC-Affiliated Physicians (available via referrals from Engemann Student Health Center)

If you are referred to a clinician outside UPC, a visit to a USC affiliated clinician should be covered at 90% as are tests and prescriptions for care not provided at the UPC Engemann Student Health Center. Students must get a referral through USC Student Health for the following specialists:

Health Care Services Outside of USC Student Health

The L.A. LGBT Center offers a Trans Health Program with services on a sliding scale. The Transgender Health Program provides comprehensive primary health care as well as trans-specific services such as pap smears for trans men, prostate exams for trans women, hormone-therapy supervision and post-surgical care for those who have undergone sex-reassignment surgery.

In addition, you can contact the following resources:

University employees are able to choose their own health care professional which means the option of a trans friendly physician can be selected. You can choose from three types of medical plans: a preferred provider organization (PPO), exclusive provider organizations, and health maintenance organizations (HMO). The USC PPO gives you the most flexibility in your choice of health care providers; the USC EPO plans provide access to Keck Medicine of USC providers; and the HMOs (Anthem and Kaiser Permanente) provide access to either Anthem-network or Kaiser Permanente health care providers. Coverage and providers vary by plan; check your medical plan’s Evidence of Coverage booklet or call the carrier directly for additional details, including requirements for prior authorization and applicable co-pays and deductibles. For more information, visit USC’s healthcare benefits site. 

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