The healthcare system in the United States has many flaws and affects so many people. One group of individuals that gets mistreated in the healthcare system is trans people.
I don’t identify as transgender, so I can’t speak of personal experiences I have had or the feelings and personal struggles that they have to deal with, but I do want to bring attention to this because it’s important and affects so many people.
Transgender individuals are a high-risk population for mental and physical health problems and are consistently and systemically underserved by the American medical system. Regular harassment and discrimination contribute to high rates of stress and— combined with adverse social, political, and economic risk factors—make transgender individuals significantly more likely to experience poor health care providers. They have to face so much adversity in their day to day life, and then having to deal with discrimination in health care system where it’s their literal lives on the line in some cases is ridiculous.
In an NBC news article, Jesse Brace talked about their experience with the healthcare system. They talked about how the medical providers would not acknowledge their pronouns and didn’t even treat them for what they came in for, and when trying to find another provider they were denied saying they had too many patients and couldn’t take anymore. It wasn’t until they found a doctor who’s child was transgender that they got the care that they needed. If it wasn’t for the doctor’s personal connection with the community, who knows how long Jesse would have been looking for a medical provider.
Medical providers need to take their own “personal beliefs” out of the picture all together. You job is to help people and that’s all people, because it’s not just transgender individuals but most marginalized groups face discrimination in the healthcare system in some way or another.
As a cisgender individual I’ve never had to deal with something like this. I just assume if someone comes to the emergency room for help they’re going to get help, and that’s not the case for a lot of people. There are so many people facing discrimination for just being who they are and not being helped just because they identify as non-binary, transgender or both is mind-boggling to me. We’re all humans with human needs and all deserve a chance at a healthy fulfilling life. The healthcare system needs to do better for transgender people.