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Barriers to health faced by transgender and non-binary black and minority ethnic people

Research has demonstrated that access to health care is a major determinant of good health, particularly for transgender and non-binary (trans/NB) individuals (Grant, et al., 2010; Institute of Medicine[IOM], 2011). Moreover, being able to disclose identities, behaviors and concerns to heath providers in order to have honest conversations has been demonstrated to be a crucial piece of the collaboration between patients and their providers (Hoffman, et al., 2009). Given that trans/NB individuals tend to experience elevated rates of discrimination when attempting to access heath care (IOM, 2011), and that black and minority ethnic people also experience a high likelihood of discrimination when trying to use health care services (Benjamins and Whitman, 2014), there is a clear need for a focus on the intersection of race/ethnicity and gender identity, exploring how this crossroad of identity impacts the experience of accessing health care of individuals who are trans/NB black and minority ethnic people. This briefing offers four propositions for creating improved overall health for trans/NB black and minority ethnic individuals.

Key messages

  • Transgender and non-binary black and minority ethnic people need improved and more equitable access to health services.
  • There is a need for increased access to social services/behavioral health for these individuals.
  • Health professionals in all health related fields should be required to have additional trainings to support their work with this community.
  • There is a demonstrated need for additional research examining the experiences of these individuals with health care services, both in the community and academia.

Sections

  • Transgender and non-binary black and minority ethnic people need improved and more equitable access to health services.
  • There is a need for increased access to social services/behavioral health for transgender and non-binary black and minority ethnic people.
  • Health professionals should be required to have additional trainings to support their work with trans/NB black and minority ethnic people.
  • There is a demonstrated need for additional research examining the experiences of trans/NB black and minority ethnic people with health care services.
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Author(s):Shanna K. Kattari; Darren L. Whitfield; Jonah De Chants; Antonia R.G. Alvarez
Briefing series:Better Health Briefing Paper 41
Publisher: Race Equality Foundation
Publication date: May 2016