The American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy recently published an article encouraging pharmacists to play “an active role in the care of transgender individuals.” The American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy is the official journal of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists.
The author, University of California, San Francisco professor Jennifer Cocohoba, writes that more education on medications often used in gender transition will help pharmacists keep patients safe. She urges pharmacists to treat transgender people with respect, asking how they prefer to be addressed rather than relying on the name or gender marker in their records; and suggests that pharmacists can be important advocates when transgender patients’ insurers refuse to cover their medications. Noting that pharmacy journals have published only a handful of articles on transgender health, most focused only on HIV care, Cocohoba outlines areas of transgender health ripe for study by pharmacy researchers.
The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists represents pharmacists who work in hospitals and other healthcare facilities. Last year, HRC’s Healthcare Equality Index provided over 30,000 hours of training in LGBTQ patient-centered care to healthcare facility staff across the United States. Over 30 percent of that training was on topics specific to transgender health, indicating a significant interest in the issue.
Pharmacists in all settings are increasingly embracing their role in transgender patients’ health. In July, HRC released a guide for pharmacists addressing the unique needs of LGBTQ patients. A companion guide offers pharmacy advice for LGBTQ patients, encouraging them to build relationships with their pharmacist.
To learn more about HRC’s work improving healthcare for LGBTQ people and their families, visit http://www.hrc.org/explore/topic/health-and-aging.