Defence Minister Marise Payne says the $1 million spent on sex changes for military personnel should be viewed in context of a $430 million healthcare spend.
Defence Minister Marise Payne insists taxpayer-funded sex changes for Australian military personnel are a justified expense.
One Nation leader Pauline Hanson used question time in the Senate on Monday to query reports the government had chipped in for 27 operations in the past five years at a cost of $1 million.
"Defence force members are not individually covered by Medicare," Senate Payne explained.
She insisted gender dysphoria cases were treated in accordance with best practice clinical guidelines like any other medical condition.
Senator Hanson raised concerns sex changes were being prioritised over helping soldiers grappling with post-traumatic stress disorder or other mental illnesses.
She argued sex changes were a "personal choice" and would not help protect the country.
But Senator Payne maintained in no way did Defence's involvement in these cases diminish its commitment to offering support for returning personnel and veterans.
It was important to look at the defence health spend in context - the $1 million was part of a $430 million allocation, she said.