“My PCP has virtually no idea how to treat transgender patients” Findings from a Survey of Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming Individuals in Arkansas
Methods: We conducted an online health needs survey of T/GNC adults in Arkansas in Fall 2013 using an instrument adapted from the National Transgender Discrimination Survey. Participants were recruited through social media, special events and provider offices. Data were analyzed using STATA to produce descriptive statistics and to test associations using the Fisher exact test.
Results: Eighty-four self-identified T/GNC individuals completed the full survey. Thirty-seven percent were not covered by health insurance; 33% reported postponing either medically needed or preventive healthcare due to discrimination on the part of a healthcare provider; 19% had been refused treatment by a healthcare provider; and 39% reported having to teach their medical provider about T/GNC people in order to receive appropriate care. Seventy-seven percent reported having seriously considered suicide, while 43% reported an actual suicide attempt. When asked to rank their top policy priorities, the top two priorities dealt with obtaining appropriate healthcare.
Conclusions: We found widespread discrimination from healthcare providers, substantial barriers to access, and significant deficits in providers’ knowledge of how to provide quality care for these T/GNC respondents. These results have informed organizing efforts of the T/GNC community and allies in Arkansas concerned with improving healthcare access and provider knowledge and understanding.
Learning Areas:Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Diversity and culture
Describe types of healthcare discrimination experienced by transgender and gender non-conforming individuals, Describe key findings from a survey of Arkansas transgender and gender non-conforming individuals. Describe actions taken in Arkansas to respond to results of a survey of Arkansas transgender and gender non-conforming individuals.
Keyword(s): Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT), Health Care Access
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I was the faculty advisor/supervisor for the primary author, who was a student when she conducted this survey so I am very knowledgeable about the project and its findings. I also work with the transgender community as an advocate and am a research partner on a PCORI project with the Arkansas Transgender Equality Coalition which is engaging the trans community in prioritizing health issues they want to study.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.