EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The ED often is the access point of choice for transgender patients who may be reluctant to interact with providers. Experts say there is a need for training and education on how to present a gender-affirming healthcare environment.  Recommended steps include a review of policies, along with corresponding changes to electronic and paper intake forms to ensure that the language used is inclusive of all genders.

  • While blanket discrimination may be declining, experts note that some providers are uncertain about how to interact with a transgender patient.
  • It’s always best to ask patients for their preferred name and pronoun and to repeat this exercise every three to six months for return patients, as gender identity can be fluid.
  • To ease anxiety for transgender patients, consider developing a navigator program that will pair any transgender patient who requests the service with a trained advocate who can support and guide the patient through the system.