Activists Discuss Best Practices for Improving Health Care for Transgender Communities

Transgender and health policy activists from around the world came together on August 21-24, 2011, in San Francisco to explore innovative and effective ways to improve access to quality and comprehensive health care for transgender individuals and communities.

Across the globe, transgender individuals face egregious human rights abuses resulting in enormous health disparities. Research shows that transgender individuals are more vulnerable to HIV infection, drug and alcohol addiction, suicide and depression, and a host of other health risks.

The San Francisco meeting—convened by the Open Society Foundations' Sexual Health and Rights Project—featured case studies of ongoing projects by groups in Canada, Kyrgyzstan, Nicaragua, South Africa, Spain, and the United States, as well as global advocacy efforts. Discussions focused on developing criteria for a rights-based approach to ensuring access to care for transgender individuals. The participants also offered recommendations for furthering leadership on transgender health in activist and medical communities.

The case studies will be presented in a forthcoming publication by the Open Society Foundations.