A Boost for LGBTQ+ Health

A fellowship program will train specialists at UW Health.

The UW School of Medicine and Public Health has been selected as the inaugural institution for the National LGBTQ+ Fellowship Program. Over four years, $750,000 in funding from the American Medical Association Foundation will establish a training program for early-career physicians with the goal of optimizing the health of LGBTQ+ patients. The school was chosen because of its multidisciplinary network of leaders with expertise in this area.

The award marks the start of the foundation’s nationwide effort to train hundreds of fellows, establishing a workforce of physicians fluent in LGBTQ+ health care.

Several studies show that this patient population experiences higher rates of depression, increased suicide risk, and reduced access to preventive health care for chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease.

Elizabeth Petty

“Far too many LGBTQ+ patients in our society experience oppression, stigma, lack of medical understanding, and discrimination when seeking care,” says Petty. John Maniaci/UW Health

“We envision a future where diverse patient populations feel supported by health care providers who are well versed in both general and unique medical needs of LGBTQ+ patients,” says Elizabeth Petty MD’86, a dean at the School of Medicine and Public Health. “We have much ground to cover before we reach this goal, as far too many LGBTQ+ patients in our society experience oppression, stigma, lack of medical understanding, and discrimination when seeking care, which leads to life-threatening health disparities. Our team is deeply committed to changing that narrative.”

Tags: Health and medicine, LGBTQ

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