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The AMA Tops This Week’s #LGBTWellness News

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.

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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 BiracialSeniorMen

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.

LGBTAppleRural 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.

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#LGBTWellness News – LGBT Students Feel Like They Don’t Matter

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.

RainbowVermontLGBT Youth Not as Connected to Communities

A statewide survey of students in Vermont found that LGBT students were less likely to feel like they matter to their local communities than were other students, with less than four in ten LGBT young people feeling this way about their community. They also reported higher rates of mental health problems, bullying, unwanted sexual contact, and more, when compared to their peers.

Self-Tests for HIV Test Well

A review of research found high levels of accuracy when people used HIV rapid tests to test themselves, suggesting that it may be underutilized as a way of helping people conveniently and privately learn their HIV status. Researchers say that the quality of self-testing could be improved even more by making collecting samples easier and by simplifying instructions.

Wellbeing Impacted by Marriage Recognition

MAP released a report on the harms faced by children when individuals and institutions refuse to recognize the validity of the same-sex marriages of their parents, including not being able to join health insurance plans, facing denial and health and social services, and problems with child welfare agencies. They estimate that two million children have an LGBT parent today.

Facebook and Coming Out RainbowFacebook2

A study examined the use of Facebook by LGBT young people, including how social media interacted with managing the disclosure of their sexual orientation or gender identity to others. Among their findings was that closeted young people had “considerably lower overall network connectivity” than others, and that one’s outness to one’s family was particularly important.

More Centers Offering Phones for At Risk Youth

PowerOn announced an expansion of its program that provides phones and other devices to LGBT youth experiencing or at risk for homelessness, with new partnerships at three LGBT centers in different regions of the country. PowerOn says that LGBT youth – who are much more likely to end up on the street – use these devices to connect to healthcare, critical services, jobs, and more.

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Marking Cancer Survivorship Month

The CDC released new resources in recognition of June as National Cancer Survivorship Month, including resources for caregivers, special information for those who use tobacco, and stories from survivors. LGBT cancer survivors and their caregivers often encounter unique challenges and may find these resources particularly beneficial to ensuring a successful treatment and recovery.

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“Cancer and Women” Resource Tops This Week’s #LGBTWellness News

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. 

Spotlight on Women’s Health CDC cancer page

The CDC published an updated “Cancer and Women” resource page as part of their recognition of Women’s Health Month. Among their tips to stay cancer-free: steer clear of tobacco products (which queer and transgender women use more of than other women) and get screened regularly (which queer and transgender women generally do less than other women).

HIV Prevention Uneven among Troops

A CDC study found that of those in the U.S. military who were prescribed PrEP (the HIV prevention treatment), the vast majority were men who have sex with other men. Unfortunately, while Black men make up the majority of military personnel who are diagnosed with HIV, they so far made up only 19% of those who were prescribed PrEP, suggesting more outreach is needed.

Financial Hardship Tied to Substance, Tobacco Use

A study of queer men in Paris found that financial hardship was associated with higher substance use, including marijuana and tobacco use. The authors say this may help shine light on who within the queer community needs particular assistance in addressing substance and tobacco use, and the study also hints at how intersectional identities are important in addressing disparities generally.

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NY Shelter to Tackle LGBT Homelessness:

Patch reported on a new shelter that will open in New York to help LGBT youth experiencing homelessness. Sadly, LGBT youth are far more likely than others to find themselves without a stable place to live, due to factors like family rejection. The new shelter will serve youth through age 24 and is part of a $9.5 million effort to combat the homelessness disparities queer youth face.

LGBT Immigrants At Risk for Sexual Assault

The Center for American Progress published a report finding that LGBT immigrants in detention may face 97 times the risk of sexual assault and abuse compared to others. They also found that solitary confinement may be overused as while it potentially serves as a protective option as a last resort, placement in solitary confinement also poses other risks, such as that to mental health.

Do You Have What it Takes?

A study explored what it might mean for a healthcare provider to be considered competent in transgender care, an often-used phrase that lacks a clear definition to date. Specifically, they discuss understanding the health needs, health disparities, and limitations in coverage by insurance coverage, the latter of which often presents a barrier to transgender folks getting what they need.

 

Teens Approved to Use PrEP

Healio reported that the FDA has now approved the use of PrEP for teenagers, meaning that the use of the treatment to prevent HIV transmission is no longer limited to adults. The change was based on a study that found favorable results of PrEP in teens, though it also found that they had trouble adhering to the daily drug properly, suggesting they may need support in that area.

Depression, Stress, and Measures of Orientation Depression

A national study found that all sexual minority groups had more depressive symptoms than people who were heterosexual in terms of identity, attraction, and behavior. Among all sexual minority women, as well as men who identified as “mostly-heterosexual,” higher perceived stress was found to be a mediating factor in these depressive symptoms. The authors say this shows the importance of measuring different forms of sexual identity, attraction, and behavior.

New Findings on Autism and Gender Dysphoria

Researchers found that transgender men seemed to have higher levels of autism spectrum disorder than transgender women. The finding is interesting because it means that the trend of cisgender men having higher rates of autism spectrum disorder holds true for transgender men, rather than following a trend of the sex transgender people are assigned at birth.

The State of Trans Medical Education

Researchers reviewed the available literature on transgender health curricula and found that while there was no consensus on exactly what content to use, all of the educational interventions that have been written about in published literature were successful. The authors recommend building consensus and ensuring that content is retained long-term and is skills-based.

SocialJusticeSexualitReport on Poverty and LGBT Wellbeing

The Social Justice Sexuality Project published a report on how the issue of poverty impacts LGBT people, especially LGBT people of color and transgender individuals. The report, which relied on extensive community meetings and interviews, issues recommendations on topics such as prohibiting discrimination, increasing access to health services, and addressing homelessness.

Diversity, Health Centers Improve Wellness

MedicalXpress reported on a new study conducted by Yale which found that communities had healthier residents when they had more racial diversity, public transportation, and health centers, among other things. Did you know that CenterLink can help you find an LGBT center in your community – many of which offer health services that Yale found make communities healthier?

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Missed the E-Summit? You can view the webinars or download the slide decks here: https://bit.ly/2JGedNO

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We’re Going to Need to See ID… #LGBTWellness News of the Week

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. 

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Bills Could Curb Youth Smoking

Several cities and states – including Massachusetts, Illinois, and the city of Austin – made moves in recent days to raise the age to buy cigarettes from 18 to 21. The states of California, Hawaii, New Jersey and Oregon already have such laws, and a new law in Maine will go into effect on June 1. These policies could be a boon to decreasing the high smoking disparities LGBT youth face.

Discrimination Dangerous for Trans Community

A study based on the National Transgender Discrimination Survey found that being denied services increased transgender people’s rates of attempted suicide. Additionally, those who faced more denial of care or discrimination in treatment settings were more likely to forgo services. 25% had been denied services and 28% had faced discrimination, underscoring the urgency of the problem.

Translating Apps Means More Than Language

A study on HIV prevention apps found that Spanish-speaking sexual minority men prioritize being personally interested in apps, while English-speaking men were previously found to be mostly interested in the efficiency of these apps. The results suggest that HIV apps for Spanish speakers may require more customization than just translating existing apps from English.

Higher Diabetes Risk for Queer Women Diabetes

EurekAlert reported on a new study finding that queer women were more likely to develop type 2 diabetes over time than were heterosexual women. Specifically, over the 24 year study time, lesbian and bisexual women had about 27% higher risk than did their heterosexual peers; lesbian and bisexual women also developed type 2 diabetes earlier in life than did other women.

Impact of Homelessness on LGBT Youth

LGBTQ Nation reported on the epidemic of homelessness affecting the LGBT youth population, citing newly-released data from a national report that LGBT youth are twice as likely as others to experience homelessness. Furthermore, once homeless, they are 15% more likely to experience physical harm and 18% more likely to exchange sex for money, food, or shelter to survive.

Personalities Could Inform Prevention

Researchers examined how personality traits relate to sexual health practices in queer men and found that conscientiousness, openness, and extraversion were all associated with having fewer instances of condomless sex, while conscientiousness and extraversion were both associated with using preventive services. The authors say research on personalities could inform prevention strategies.

ThisFreeLife2Your Smoke-free Moment of the Month

This Free Life published another amazing video as part of its This Free Friday series, which highlights members of the LGBT community who avoid tobacco use. This month’s features Mia, who explains how she rejects negativity and stays tobacco-free to keep her gorgeous look. The campaign is aimed at LGBT youth, who smoke at much higher rates than others.

LGBTQ Teens Face Major Disparities

A new study of 12,000 LGBTQ teenagers nationwide found that these youth face a wide range of challenges, including 77% feeling depressed or down within the past week and 95% having trouble sleeping at night. Some youth faced additional challenges, such as LGBTQ youth of color, of whom only 11% said their race or ethnicity was viewed positively by others, and transgender and gender expansive youth, of whom 50% said then could never use the restroom at school that corresponds with their gender identity. Media outlets such as U.S. News reported on the groundbreaking study, with many noting that these disparities for youth exist despite progress on LGBTQ rights in some respects.

One Secret to Better Trans Health?

Researchers in Colorado found that transgender and gender-nonconforming adults had a variety of better health behaviors when they had a medical provider who was transgender-inclusive.  These including being more likely to receive wellness exams, less likely to delay care due to facing discrimination, and less likely to be depressed than those without a transgender-inclusive doctor.

 

Study Testing New HIV Prevention for Youth

Researchers have launched a Detroit-based study of young queer men and transgender individuals who use substances including alcohol and who are often missed by common HIV prevention services. The effort, known as Project Swerve, has been enrolling patients since April 2017 and is testing how including a substance use intervention in HIV prevention may change things.

Honoring LGBT Older Adults Chase Brexton

Chase Brexton Health Care reported on their efforts to recognize National Honor our LGBT Elders Day on May 16th. The occasion, which Chase Brexton founded, is designed to recognize and celebrate LGBT older adults, who often face unique health, social, and other needs due to a lack of support from biological families and because they are more likely to be unmarried than non-LGBT peers.

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#LGBTWellness News for You All In One Place

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. 

CDC Releases Resources on Trans Folks & HIV

The CDC launched a new webpage and fact sheet on the risk of HIV in the transgender community as part of their recognition of National HIV Testing Day. The fact sheet notes that of the 2351 transgender people who received an HIV diagnosis between 2009 and 2014, half lived in the South and 15% were transgender men – an often overlooked group in HIV prevention.

Sexual Health of Queer African American Women AALesbians2

A study of sexual minority African American women in the South found that depressive symptoms, past incarceration, and intimate partner violence were all associated with sexually transmitted infection history. Researchers, who also looked at issues like alcohol and drug use during sexual encounters, recommend that providers address psychological stressors and STI risk in this population.

Evidence of Cardiovascular, Respiratory Disparities

A review of research found evidence of higher mortality rates relating to cardiovascular and respiratory disease among same-sex cohabiting women compared to opposite-sex cohabiting peers, and higher rates of asthma among sexual minority women compared to heterosexual peers. Researchers say more data collection is needed in large surveys to help confirm these disparities (which unfortunately make sense given high rates of tobacco use by LGBT people).

Pacific Wave of Conversion Therapy Bans

Hawaii became the 12th state to ban the practice of conversion therapy for minors, which has been discredited and condemned by major psychological and pediatric organizations. Meanwhile, the California Assembly passed a bill that would classify this therapy – which seeks to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity – as a fraudulent business practice.

Parental Problems Tied to Poor Sleep

Researchers found that sexual minorities have worse sleep than do heterosexual individuals, and that a big part of the reason might be strained relationships with parents when compared to their heterosexual peers. Teen Vogue also reported on the study, and noted that minority stress and discrimination against queer people has already been attributed to other disparities they face.

Rainbow UKLondon Calling… for an LGBT Center

In news from across the pond, Pink News reported that plans are underway to open a new LGBT center in London, largely to fill what is perceived as a gap in physical and mental healthcare for queer folks. It hopes to offer support groups, intergenerational contact, and other activities to improve wellbeing. Many stateside centers offer highly-needed services just like these.

Docs Dropping the Ball on PrEP?

Researchers found that among patients who were looking for PrEP (the HIV prevention treatment) at an infectious disease clinic in Missouri, 48% of those who had a primary care doctor had asked to be prescribed PrEP but were not, with many doctors saying it was specialty care. Researchers say this represents a missed opportunity for primary care doctors to help prevent HIV transmission.

Finding PrEP Made Easy

Speaking of PrEP: the CDC announced a partnership between its National Prevention Information Network and Emory University, in which NPIN is now maintaining a national PrEP locator to help folks find providers who can prescribe the treatment. It also helps users to know if they might be able to get assistance or insurance coverage with the 1,800 providers who are currently listed.

Putting the “T” in Telehealth

NPR reported on how telehealth – in which people can “attend” doctor’s appointments remotely using webcams – is improving access to transgender-competent healthcare. It might be especially useful for transgender people outside of urban areas, many of whom report having to travel long distance to find a trans-friendly doctor, and at least one LGBT-specific service has already begun.

Limited Leave for LGBTQ People of Color

HRC published a report on the 1.8 million LGBT people of color in the U.S. workforce, and how (due to intersectional discrimination) they struggle to get time off to care for themselves and their families. For example, 71% of those surveyed said that they did not have the resources to be able to take time off without pay, and 27% feared discrimination if they requested medical or family leave.

NPs Want Trans Training NursePractitioners

Researchers found in a study of nurse practitioners (NPs) in the northeastern U.S. that many fear gaps in their knowledge of transgender-related care will prevent them from delivering quality services. Many noted that their nursing curriculum had not included sufficient information on transgender individuals, and that options were also limited in continuing education courses.

Trans Wellness Center Set to Open

LGBTQ Nation reported that six organizations who serve transgender individuals in Los Angeles, including the LA LGBT Center, are joining together to open a new Trans Wellness Center in the city. The project is funded with a one million dollar grant from the LA County Department of Public Health, and will help folks access healthcare, housing, jobs, and legal services.

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Keep in touch with LGBT HealthLink by joining our FREE membership. Have access to our library of tools and resources, all free. Join our members-only online networking groups, exclusive webinars just for members, and keep up to date with our Weekly #LGBTWellness Roundup. It’s quick and easy to join, and it’s all free!

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We’ve Got All the #LGBTWellness News You Need!

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. 

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Gender-affirming Care Improves Lives

NBC News examined how gender-affirming surgery had a positive effect on the quality of life of transgender individuals. Citing a recent German study that found that 75% of transgender people who had such surgery had a better quality of life in the years that followed, the article explored the state of gender-affirming care in the U.S. and how lives can be improved by it.

Half of Bisexual Utahns Faced Sexual Violence

A Utah study found that LGB people were more likely than heterosexual folks to have experienced sexual violence. The results were particularly staggering for bisexual individuals, almost half of whom faced sexual violence during their lives, compared to about a third of lesbian and gay people and 9% of heterosexual people. Researchers say the trend is not unique to Utah.

Nonbinary Youth Struggle Getting Care

A study of gender-nonconforming young adults in the San Francisco area found that many struggled in accessing healthcare, even at clinics known to be culturally competent for transgender individuals. Many faced barriers such as providers not understanding what it meant to be nonbinary, and felt they had to “borrow” a binary identity or simply avoid receiving care.

Keeping Transgender Women in Care

Fenway Institute published a guide on how providers can help keep transgender women living with HIV in care. Transgender women may fall out of care after experiencing discrimination, failing to feel represented where they seek care, and facing a fragmented system that is not aligned to their various healthcare goals. The guide provides best practices to remove these barriers.

Mentorship Among Queer Healthcare Professionals Mentoring

Researchers found that 72% of young LGBT healthcare professionals think it is important to have an LGBT-identified mentor for their personal development; the study also found that 48.5% of those surveyed did, in fact, have a mentor of the same sexual orientation as themselves. Participants said such relationships were helpful to get LGBT-specific advice and networking help.

Exploring Suicidality and Religiosity

Reuters examined the role of religion in suicidality among LGBTQ people. For most individuals, having involvement with religion has been viewed as something that decreases risk of suicidality, but some studies have shown that the opposite is true for LGBTQ people. One recent study found that lesbian youth faced an especially heightened risk of suicidality tied to religiosity.

Centers Short on Formal Tobacco Training

Researchers found that administrators of LGBT centers providing primary care believed that LGBT tobacco cessation was important, but that staff had been only informally trained and resource availability largely relied on a staff “champion” who was passionate about the issue. (Did you know that LGBT centers can contact HealthLink for tobacco control resources? It’s true!)

Cyberbullying Hurting Queer Youth

A major NIH study found that sexual minority youth reported higher depressive symptoms from the eleventh grade through three years after high school, and that one key association was higher rates of cyberbullying, especially among male-identified youth. Other associations of depressive symptoms were lower family satisfaction and greater likelihood of unmet medical needs.

NatTransTestingDayRecognizing Trans HIV Testing Day

The Center of Excellence for Transgender health marked National Transgender HIV Testing Day on April 18, noting that transgender women of color in particular face disproportionately high rates of HIV; research has been limited on transgender men, but they are also at risk. The Center published videos, resources, and promotional materials to increase testing in the community.

High Mental Health Needs for Trans Youth

A study found that transgender children and adolescents had high rates of both attention deficit disorders (affecting 15% of transfeminine and 16% of transmasculine youth) and depressive disorders (affecting 49% of transfeminine and 62% of transmasculine youth). Transgender youth also had higher rates of suicidal ideation and self-injury than their cisgender peers.

Students Think More are Smoking & Vaping

Researchers found that 61% of students overestimated how many of their peers used e-cigarettes and 74% overestimated peer use of regular cigarettes. Those who only overestimated e-cigarette use were 3.29 times more likely to be curious about using e-cigarettes and 8.15 more likely to be currently “vaping.” It’s bad news for LGBT youth, who use both tobacco products more heavily.

Mandatory Trans Training for MDs?

Infectious Disease News explored the idea of requiring medical students to receive basic education on transgender health, citing research that more than a million people in the U.S. are transgender but that medical students receive only a few hours of total education on LGBT health. The author notes that many students are actually asking for more, and recommends it be mandatory.

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#LGBTWellness News: Helpful How-to Vids for SOGI Collection

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. 

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Videos Explain Care for LGBT Patients

The National LGBT Health Education Center published a series of videos to help healthcare personnel learn how to collect sexual orientation and gender identity data, while treating their patients with respect. They also cover how to help patients who changed their names, use a patient’s preferred pronouns, and work with queer people whose native language is not English.

Cancer Centers Lack LGBTQ Policies

Researchers examined 21 comprehensive cancer centers across the U.S. and found that while most had an advisory committee regarding sexual and gender minorities, most did not have explicit policies or routine practices about key issues like inclusive data collection and forms. The authors recommend more coordinated and systematic efforts to address LGBTQ needs.

 How Discrimination Hurts Care Descrimination

A new study of national data found that facing discrimination in various settings, including outside of the healthcare system itself, caused transgender people to delay receiving preventive care. In total, 26.25% of transgender people reported doing so, with those who experienced discrimination up to 20 times more likely than others to report delaying care.

Community’s Risk for Eating Disorders

Slate published an article exploring eating disorders among LGBTQ folks, who faced unique factors with respect to body image and the intersection of gender identity. One study found that more than half of LGBTQ youth reported such a disorder, and transgender and gender-nonconforming people may be at even higher risks than others.

Parents Failing “The Talk”

A study found that parents struggle to discuss the basics of sexual health with LGBTQ teenagers, with many reporting that they do not feel knowledgeable enough about queer relationships to explain how to be safe. Researchers say that having these conversations are nonetheless critical for positive youth development, and suggest interventions to help parents could be useful.

The End of HIV in Sight?

The Lancet examined the global health community’s goal of reducing HIV incidence by 90% by the year 2030, which recent studies have suggested is unlikely, even if factoring in recent developments such as the advent of PrEP. However, the author contends that the issue is ultimately a matter of priority-setting, and that with sufficient resources, the goal is possible.

Conversion Therapy Bans on a Roll

NBC News reported that yet another state passed a ban on the discredited practice of so-called “conversion therapy” for LGBTQ youth, with the Maryland legislature sending a bill to the state’s governor for signature. It would be the eleventh state to have done so, with Washington state having just passed its own ban in recent weeks.

STD Awareness monthNew Resources for STD Awareness Month

The CDC launched a new website in recognition of STD Awareness Month that includes resources for both patients and providers around the theme “Treat Me Right.” Among the many available resources are a report on how providers can ask essential and LGBT-inclusive questions regarding sexual health, graphics for social media, and sample social media posts.

What Queer Folks Need to Quit

A study found that LGB people were more likely to be smokers if they were younger, less educated, and used alcohol; queer men were also more likely to smoke if they used heroine. Researchers say that the results suggest cessation programs for queer folks should focus on those who younger and have lower education levels, and factor in potential use of other substances.

Grindr Turns Notifications On Grindr

The New York Times reported that Grindr, a social networking application primarily for queer men, will now allow its 3.3 million users to opt into regular HIV testing reminders that even help them find close testing sites. Experts hailed the move as helping to normalize and destigmatize HIV testing, thus helping to overcome some of the biggest barriers to folks being tested.

 

Trans Victimization and Suicidality

A Swedish study of transgender individuals found that 37% had seriously considered suicide within the past year and 32% had attempted suicide at least once. Both facing offensive treatment within the past three months and lifetime exposure to transgender-related violence were associated with higher rates of suicidality, highlighting the repercussions of such experiences.

Panel Examines Groundbreaking Discrimination Survey

Harvard University recorded a panel discussion on a groundbreaking new survey it conducted on LGBT people’s experiences within the healthcare system. Panelists discussed the survey’s findings that LGBT people frequently encounter discrimination while trying to access healthcare, and that these experiences have impacts on both their physical and mental health.

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Keep in touch with LGBT HealthLink by joining our FREE membership. Have access to our library of tools and resources, all free. Join our members-only online networking groups, exclusive webinars just for members, and keep up to date with our Weekly #LGBTWellness Roundup. It’s quick and easy to join, and it’s all free!

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#LGBTWellness news – Facebook: The Key to Quit Smoking

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 seven days. 

RainbowFacebookStudy Exposes Social (Media) Smokers

A new study found that LGBT people, especially smokers, were more likely to view tobacco-related messaging on social media than were non-LGBT people. In contrast, non-LGBT people were more likely to view tobacco-related (especially anti-tobacco) messages on traditional media. The results suggest that social media is key to decrease smoking among LGBT folks.

Bisexual Girls at High Risk for Teen Pregnancy

Researchers found that bisexual teen girls were at five times higher risk for becoming pregnant than were heterosexual teens, while lesbian and “mostly heterosexual”-identified girls were about twice as likely as heterosexual girls to become pregnant. Researchers believe factors like bullying and abuse are why sexual minority girls were more likely to become pregnant as teens.

Queer Men in Trouble Tanning? TanningMale

Researchers found that sexual minority men were more likely than heterosexual men to report using indoor tanning, both ever and within the last year. They also scored lower on protecting themselves from the sun when they were outside, although they did report some good behaviors, like wearing sunscreen and seeking shade. Tanning and sun exposure can lead to skin cancer.

HIV Prevention For and By Men of Color

Gay Star News reported on a new initiative in the U.K. to have queer men of color – who face disproportionately high rates of HIV on both sides of the pond – build an HIV prevention campaign that reflects them, from the ground up. The campaign’s founders hope that if queer people can see themselves in the program, they will be more likely to get on board and get tested.

Affirming Surgeries Growing, But Still Costing

A study found that the number of gender-affirming surgeries has increased in the U.S. since 2000, with 83.9% of patients seeking care under transgender-related codes from 2006-2011 seeking surgery as part of their care. Still, the majority were not covered by health insurance, with Reuters reporting on the fact that many transgender people pay out-of-pocket for this care.

Apps2Stopping HPV in the App Store

Fenway Health announced a new study in which they will test an app-based platform to increase HPV vaccination and awareness among young queer men, who are at high risk for contracting HPV but are often left out of female-focused vaccination efforts. HPV puts queer men at risk for anal, penile, mouth, and throat cancers, Fenway stated, and the app could help prevent this.

Hawaii Says “Aloha” to a Billion Dollars

Big Island Now reported that the state of Hawaii has saved $1 billion in medical costs due to its tobacco control efforts over the past two decades. LGBT folks are one of Hawaii’s priority populations, since they still smoke at a higher rate than others, reported Big Island Now. That’s a national trend, but the rest of the country can learn from Hawaii’s overall low smoking rate.

 

“Simon” Says What Youth Need to Hear

Care2 reported on the popular new LGBT-themed comedy entitled Love, Simon, and why it is important for LGBT youth to see themselves represented in film and other media. The article points to the bullying, familial rejection, and stigma that queer youth face, and says that seeing that their stories and identities matter can help build a more inclusive society for LGBT youth.

RainbowHeartbeat

LGBT Folks Have Worse Heart Health

The American Heart Association announced preliminary findings that queer folks were less likely than their heterosexual peers to have ideal cardiovascular health. Researchers looked at over 2400 adults and found that LGB people were 36% less likely to have an optimal level of heart health. A main reason for the disparity was higher rates of smoking among LGB adults.

HIV Peer Navigation Post-incarceration

Researchers conducted a randomized clinical trial of queer men and transgender women living with HIV as they were released from LA County Jail. They found that participants who received a peer navigation intervention to help manage their health needs achieved higher rates of viral suppression than did people who received a traditional model of care, warranting further study.

Evolving Guidelines on Queer Clinical Care

A study reviewed clinical guidelines on primary care and family planning for LGBT patients and identified a whopping 2,006 in available literature. From these, they distilled recurring themes like qualities of the clinical environment, cultural sensitivity of providers, and confidentiality. The authors note the need for frequent updates to such guidelines as research is rapidly evolving.

Exploring Autism in the Trans Community TransBrain

Slate examined why studies have found that a disproportionate number of autistic young people are transgender. While some people say there may be a genetic link between the two traits, others believe that some of the characteristics of autistic individuals – such as less reverence for social norms, or a possible “overfocused interest” in the topic of gender – could explain the connection.

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#LGBTWellness: Safety for LGBT Youth Still Needs Work

RainbowLockersNo Rush to Protect Student Safety

Researchers found that only one out of eight measures to improve LGBTQ student safety, as monitored by the School Health Profiles study, increased in most states between 2010 and 2014. Reuters reported on the findings and noted that schools were doing better on things like designating safe spaces than they were at creating GSAs or improving mental health care.

PrEP Uptake Lags Among Minorities CDC PrEP

The CDC found that while 500,000 Black and 300,000 Latinx individuals could benefit from taking PrEP (the HIV prevention treatment), under 8,000 prescriptions have been filled for members of each group. The Daily Beast also reported on the findings and other studies showing that minorities have lower rates of PrEP usage despite facing higher HIV exposure risk.

Don’t Miss Bisexual Health Awareness Month

The Bisexual Resource Center launched its annual Bisexual Health Awareness Month campaign, with a social media toolkit, selected recent articles, and more resources. They include resources for bisexual folks who want to improve their health, and for others who wish to be good allies or supporters of bisexual health equity. Either way, check out the campaign before the month is up!

 More Proof Patients OK with Questions

A study examined the acceptability of patients being asked for their sexual orientation and gender identity and found, as have similar studies, that patients overwhelmingly do not mind being asked, with only 3% reporting some kind of offense. US News explored the findings and the importance of collecting this data to provide quality care to LGBT patients.

Presumptive Treatment of Gonorrhea?

Researchers examined the practice of presumptively treating suspected gonorrhea infections before test results have come back. They found that the site of the infection (urethral, rectal, or pharyngeal) played a big role in how likely an infection was likely to be treated presumptively, and recommend implementing point-of-care testing to improve on this model.

Making Public Housing Smoke-free NBHN smokefree

The National Behavioral Health Network published an infographic on the effort to make public housing smoke-free, which is slated to happen nationwide this year due to a new regulation. However, almost a million units across the country still need to be converted. We hope the policy will help LGBT people, who smoke at higher rates than others, quit (and avoid secondhand smoke).

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#LGBTWellness News: A Little About Us and Much More

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 seven days. 

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Did You Check Us Out on Grindr?

In recognition of March as Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, LGBT HealthLink partnered with Grindr to promote cancer screening with special popup messages on March 2nd. The aim is to help meet the 80% by 2018 goal, an initiative to have 80% of adults 50-plus being tested for colorectal cancer by the end of this year.

Surprising News on Youth Suicide Risk

Researchers found that sexually-active youth whose sexual partners did not match up with their sexual orientation – for example, gay students who had opposite-sex partners – had 70% higher rates of suicidal ideation or attempt than did others. News sources reported on the study for shining light on how sexual orientation-related stressors may put certain youth at risk.

Alcohol Expectations and Abuse

A study examined how queer women’s expectations about what drinking related to their likelihood of alcohol abuse. It found that those who reported “drinking to forget” were more likely than others to have instances of heavy drinking, while those who expected to become more aggressive when drinking were more likely than others to show alcohol abuse and dependence.

CDC EcigsCDC: That E-cig Isn’t Helping You

The CDC released a new infographic on e-cigs, which explains the dangers of these devices and that e-cigs are not an approved way to quit smoking. In fact, 40% of e-cig users have never smoked cigarettes before and are a whole new “market” for tobacco companies. Research shows that both LGBT youth and adults have higher rates of e-cig use than do their peers.

Finding Young Men for STI Studies

Researchers explored using venue-based sampling to find young men aged 14-17 for STI prevention studies, since they can be a hard population to recruit and thus understand. They identified and visited places like LGBT centers and popular parks, and recruitment went well. Youth recruited in more structured venues (like centers) had lower rates of STIs than did others.

Where to Retire if You’re LGBTQ FTL

SeniorAdvice.com published its top twenty list of cities for LGBTQ folks to retire in, including a fun infographic that shows important characteristics like quality medical care and affordable housing. #1 on the list? LGBT HealthLink’s home of Fort Lauderdale, Florida!

Taking Advice from Stephen Fry

Towleroad reported that Gay British actor and personality Stephen Fry was diagnosed with prostate cancer last year and has recently been treated. He’s now urging his fans to get tested if they are at risk, which public health experts advise is inclusive of queer men and transgender people with prostates. The article shares various resources for GBT people to learn more.

Infographic on Intersectionalities and Smoking

LGBT HealthLink published a new infographic along with its sister health disparity networks on how smoking disproportionately impacts many vulnerable populations, including LGBT folks, people of color, homeless individuals, and rural populations. Given these groups are hardly exclusive, it also hints at which subgroups of LGBT folks are most likely to light up.

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Preferences Revealed for HIV Testing

Researchers interviewed queer Black men and Black transgender women in New York and found that their perception of accuracy of HIV tests and the characteristics of the venues in which they’re offered were key factors in them deciding to get tested. They also found that many lacked knowledge about newer and possibly preferable methods like home and self-testing.

“Scant” Research on Therapy for Trans Youth

Researchers reviewed the available literature on using cognitive behavioral therapy to treat transgender youth who experience social anxiety disorder, and found that studies assessing its success are “scant.” The review summarizes the guidelines published by major professional organizations on how to make such therapy gender-affirming and recommends more research.

E-Cigs Make You Inhale Toxic Metals

A new study found yet another danger associated with e-cigarettes: toxic metals that enter the body when the coils inside e-cigs heat up. Sources like U.S. News reported on the study as yet more proof that the dangers of e-cigs are not yet fully known to regulators or the public. It should be concerning for LGBT folks, who have picked up “vaping” faster than have others.

Festival Features LGBT Latinx Films

ReMezcla reported on LGBT Latinx films to be featured at Outfest Fusion, a festival happening soon in LA. The films tackle key topics like loss, family rejection, reproductive health, coming out, and queer friendship.