June 27, 2012
I am a physician in San Francisco and treat many transgender patients. A tremendous part of the health care needs of transgender patients are dependent on social determinants including access to gender segregated services, access to identity documents that reflect the lived gender of patients, and advocacy to gain access to even basic health care. Sharing clients with the Transgender Law Center I have an intimate understanding of the direct services they provide as well as their work to change services and facilities so that they are more accepting of transgender people. With the help of the Transgender Law Center's resources, advocacy and services many of my patients have finally gained access to accurate identity documents. With these in hand gaining employment, housing, and health insurance was finally possible. Their advocacy has directly resulted in some of my transgender patients being able to access medically necessary treatments including surgery which was previously denied them simply because of their transgender status. For many of my patients this access to medically necessary care, identity documents, access to appropriate sex-segregated services has not only been life changing, but life saving. With their tireless work, my ability to care for my patients has been tremendously enhanced but more importantly, my patients have been able to live healthier, happier and more authentic lives.
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MY ROLE:Professional with expertise in this field