In honor of Pride month, the SGM Health Equity Initiative hosted a conversation with members of the LGBTQIA+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual, and more) community in the Greater Boston area. Representing an array of identities and experiences, the panelists discuss what it’s like to access care, their positive and negative experiences within healthcare, and how those experiences intersected with their identities. Through these healthcare narratives from within the community, panelists share advice on caring for LGBTQIA+ patients.
Dr. Valerie E. Stone, a physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, has been honored by the Massachusetts Medical Society as the 2020 recipient of the Society’s LGBTQ Health Award, an honor recognizing an individual who has made outstanding contributions to LGBTQ health.
Dr. Stone serves as the vice-chair for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Brigham and Women’s. She is a nationally recognized expert on HIV/AIDS who developed and edited a textbook entitled “HIV/AIDS in U.S. Communities of Color.” Dr. Stone’s research focuses on disparities in HIV/AIDS care by race, ethnicity and gender.
In response to the current events of anti-black police violence and other forms of racism, Harvard WGS faculty have compiled a list of recommended reading for anyone seeking to understand contemporary formations of racism from a perspective that integrates analysis of race with that of gender and sexuality. We hope that these readings are a guide for all who strive to understand and respond to racism.
Dr. Katz-Wise wrote “COVID-19 and the LGBTQ+ community: Rising to unique challenges” for the Harvard Health Blog in April 2020 and so far over 2120 people have read it. Her piece remains one of the few published on the ways our community is impacted by this pandemic. With all of the media coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is striking that the conversation has not addressed the ways this pandemic is affecting LGBTQ+ people.
Pride Month offers us the chance to reflect on the barriers and stigma we continue to face in healthcare, policy, research, and our own families. Pride Month is also an opportunity to reflect on our communities’ strengths. This panel discussion offers us a chance to come together and learn from our own LGBTQ+ community at Harvard Medical School as we work together to change the conversation.
A new paper by Sean Singer, HMS student starting dermatology residency, and Alex S. Keuroghlian, HMS Associate Professor of Psychiatry, describes the potential benefits of Isotretinoin in treating acne related to HRT for transmasculine people. The paper also discusses the current barriers to Isotretinoin access and recommendations for change, including gender-inclusive data collection for the iPLEDGE program and increasing the number of trans-affirming health providers who can prescribe Isotretinoin in order to avoid referals to additional providers.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, new challenges arise each day for people across the world. Some of these challenges particularly affect the LGBTQ+ community. This unique time calls for LGBTQ+-specific resources and new ways to connect and cope.
Watch Harvard Medical School LGBTQ faculty and residents in psychiatry discuss strategies for getting through COVID-19—for both their patients and themselves. They discuss the impact of changes to routines and living arrangements, holding onto your LGBTQ+ identity, the importance of community, and the existing coping skills we have as LGBTQ+ people.
Watch Dr. Marshall Forstein and Dr. Kenneth Mayer discuss the early days of AIDS, its parallels to and differences from what we're currently experiencing with COVID-19, and what we can learn and apply today. Through sharing their own expertise and discussing questions from viewers, they discuss the past and present, stigma and panic, and the social and political impact on both AIDS and COVID-19.
Every child deserves to be part of a loving family, and establishing a secure legal relationship known as parentage between parents and their children is critical to the well-being of all families. This provides stability and security for children and allows parents to care for their children, including making important medical decisions. For LGBTQ+ families, co-parent adoption ensures that parents have a secure legal relationship to their child.
Aliya Feroe recalls the flustered OB-GYN who referred her to another physician after learning she identified as queer. For Rhi Ledgerwood, who was designated female at birth, identifies as trans and doesn’t have sex with men, it was a doctor advising about condoms and pregnancy prevention. For Tim Keyes, who came out as gay at age 17, it’s when doctors automatically assumed he sleeps with women.
Ask any LGBTQ patient about awkward doctor visits and chances are they’ll have a story to tell.
When being heterosexual is presumed even in doctors’ offices, those who identify otherwise can feel marginalized and less likely to seek medical care, contributing to health problems that include high rates of depression, suicidal behavior, alcohol and drug use and inadequate health screenings, LGBTQ advocates say.