Each week LGBT HealthLink, a Program of CenterLink, and researcher and blogger Corey Prachniak-Rincón bring you a round-up of some of the biggest LGBTQ wellness stories from the past week.
AMA Issues New LGBT Policies
Healio reported on new actions taken by the American Medical Association (AMA) regarding LGBT health, including backing LGBT-inclusive medical leave policies and recommending safe treatment of incarcerated transgender people. On that subject, the AMA said that transgender prisoners should be housed according to their gender identity and not be unnecessarily isolated.
Making Cancer Care Inclusive
Oncology Nurse Advisor published an interview on how to make clinical environments and interactions more inclusive of queer women who are seeking cancer prevention or care. The article explains how factors like heteronormative imagery in cancer prevention materials may exacerbate disparities. On a related note, a major UK cancer organization just rebranded its cervical cancer screening recommendations to apply to “anyone with a cervix” – a message that is now inclusive of transgender men and others who do not identify as women but who are susceptible to cervical cancer. .
Bi Men at Cardiovascular Risk
A new study found that while there were similar cardiovascular risk factors for gay-identified and heterosexual-identified men who have sex with men, among bisexual-identified men, there were several heightened risks. These included higher rates of mental distress, obesity, and elevated blood pressure. Researchers recommend additional research and more screenings for bisexual men.
SF Launches Queer Seniors Training
The San Francisco Chronicle reported that the city has launched a $400,000 effort to better train personnel who work with LGBT older adults, who the city estimates represent 12% of its over-60 population and are more likely to be childless and live alone. The effort will include helping providers collect more data and responding to the trauma the group has historically faced.
Exploring Care for Rural Transgender Folks
A study explored what transgender individuals in rural areas would recommend to their peers when they seek healthcare services. Among the themes that emerged were how to “vet” providers and treatments for being of good quality, how to remain strong in the face of barriers, and how to seek out mentorship to have at least one person who can give advice.
Students Support Bullied Teacher
NewNowNext reported that a California teacher is on mental health leave after being cyberbullied by students at her school for being a lesbian. Some students are now coming forward to support her by sharing their own experiences of bullying and bias from their classmates, while administrators told her to just let the situation resolve itself.
Resilience of Queer Cancer Survivors
A new study explored resilience in breast cancer survivors of diverse sexual orientations and found that among all survivors, greater resilience was associated with factors like more social support. Sexual minority women differed from heterosexual women in that those who were unemployed faced reduced resilience compared to those with jobs, a factor that heterosexual women did not face.
Loss to Follow-up High in HIV Care
A UK study followed individuals receiving HIV-related care for a 10 year period, and found that 28.1% of the 12,811 individuals studied were lost to follow-up during that time, meaning that they fell out of care. This is a higher proportion than previously reported, which could raise concerns. However, this loss to follow-up did decrease over the duration of the study.
Diversity Lacking Among LGBT Folks in Studies
Researchers found that Middle Eastern and North African Americans are underrepresented in scientific literature on sexual and gender minorities, with only one published study to date examining their identities and experiences of stigma and discrimination. The authors give advice for how those working in health fields can be more inclusive of this unique population.
Rural LGBT Teachers Face Barriers
Schools Week reported on a UK study which found that LGBT teachers in rural areas took more days off due to sexual identity-related anxiety or depression compared to those working in cities. Additionally, 40% of rural LGBT teachers said that their sexual orientation or gender identity was a barrier to receiving a promotion, compared to 15% of those working in cities.
Taking Pride in Prevention
ABC7 reported on organizations in DC taking on the issue of high suicide risk among LGBT individuals, especially youth, as Pride season is fully underway. While a time of celebration for many, the report notes the high rate of suicidality among LGBT youth, and the concerns among activists that LGBT-serving organizations and allies stay vigilant in preventing suicide.