Monday, April 27, 2015

This Is Not New To Us

Before I transitioned I avoided going to the doctors when I was sick because I was afraid of what my doctor might say about shaving my body hair.
Transgender people pass on health care to avoid social stigma
Medical Press
By Marcene Robinson
April 27, 2015

Discussing your sexual history with a doctor, or anyone for that matter, can be an uncomfortable experience.

But for many transgender people, the conversation never takes place because they aren't seeking health care, according to Adrian Juarez, PhD, a public health nurse and assistant professor in the University at Buffalo School of Nursing.

Through a preliminary study examining HIV testing access and health-based decision making in urban, transgender populations, Juarez found that social stigma, as well as a lack of affordability, keep many transgender people from pursuing needed care.

"There is evidence that health care providers do tend to be judgmental, and it's unwelcoming," says Juarez. "People will refrain from going to health care providers if they have to deal with stigma and discrimination."
I was running a fever that was over 100 and I decided to “tough-it-out” because I was afraid of what my doctor might say, I know that I should have gone but as the article says didn’t want to deal with the stigma or face possible discrimination.
Transgender women still require prostate screenings, and transgender men need a Pap smear, although a cautious health care provider may not offer the testing to avoid suggesting treatment that goes against the patient's identity.
Doctors need to treat the body, not the gender.

As many of you know I volunteer at the Hartford Gay and Lesbian Health Collective twice a week and they have this warning…

If you are sexually active get tested!

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