06/14/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

U Of Penn Latest To Offer Transgender Insurance

Come this fall, the University of Pennsylvania's insurance plan will absorb the cost of gender reassignment surgery.

The benefit covers the costs of surgery for up to $50,000. According to a research report by the organization Transgender At Work, the cost of male-to-female surgery can average around $20,000.

The initiative was introduced by the previous Lambda Alliance board, chaired by College senior and Daily Pennsylvanian columnist Dennie Zastrow.

"A problem with LGBT advocacy at Penn in the past had been that we overlooked the needs of transgender students," Zastrow said.

With this move, Penn follows in the footsteps of Harvard and Stanford, both of which decided to extend their transgender insurance benefits this year. Stanford will similarly cover transgender surgery, while Harvard will cover "transgender health."