LGBTQI+ and medicine: are we prepared to deliver dignified and non-discriminatory health care?

lgbti 19

(Jiroe, Unsplash)

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Ms. Júlia Carolina Esteves de França, a 19 year-old medical student from Joinville, Brazil. She is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.


According to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights everyone is entitled to a series of conditions, which serve to ensure quality of life and protection, they include the right of life, recognition as a person, and the insurance of no subjection to degrading or inhuman treatment.

However, as observed throughout the years, the LGBTQI+ community has been denied fair and equal treatment, with this being extended to the health sphere. When thinking about the present, we can consider that the situation has substantially improved, for LGBTQI+ rights expanded, and new laws make it harder for discrimination cases to be disregarded.

Nevertheless, we still have a long path to course, there are countries that consider non-heterosexual non-cisgender individuals as criminals or inferior beings, thus complicating healthcare reach to this group. There is as well the need to address behaviors such as deeming LGBTQI+ people a “risk group” for some diseases and conditions, disregarding that such practices are also present in a heterosexual cisgender person’s life.

\Translating it to the healthcare realm, we likewise have to contemplate each professional’s opinion on the matter – for even though the ideal behavior should be unrelated to personal beliefs, it is not what happens at all times – and each countries’ government health projects and politics directed at the LGBTQI+ group.

The root of that inequality and differentiated medical care lies upon the fact that, throughout the progression of a medicine course, LGBTQI+ healthcare issues are only discussed in out-of-class moments. There is not really a focus on the matter, even though it has come to light as an extremely relevant subject.

Themes regarding any aspect of LGBTQI+ health are seen as controversial and are avoided in public health and medical procedures’ deliberations, which ends up on leaving it aside the big conversations on evolving and adapting medical assistance ensuring it encompasses everyone.

By analyzing this situation and considering all aspects of how this topic is approached, it is only sensible to say that nowadays providing dignified and non-discriminatory health care to the whole LGBTQI+ population is possible in minor spheres. It goes because when we are given proper orientation and insight on the matter, bearing in mind respect and empathy – crucial in any medical consultation – and contemplating the individual as a whole being – understanding their unique necessities and working towards the intent to fulfill them – we can personalize approach and treatment.

In some settings, groups of students and professionals understand the importance of reaching out to LGBTQI+ people so as to improve their form of contact and learn what can and should be done. However, we still lack space for studying, learning and dissertating over this topic, meaning that for a certain amount of time, healthcare for the LGBTQI+ parcel of the population will be neglected, and their needs only partially attended. Over time we are able to overcome taboos and restrictions tied to this subject and with effort change this situation for the better, reaching the point where we can have quality healthcare for everyone.

Reference

Un.org. (2019). Universal Declaration of Human Rights. [online] Available at: https://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/ [Accessed 21 Jun. 2019].

About the author

Júlia Carolina Esteves de França is 19 years old. She lives in Joinville, Brazil. She has finished the second semester of the course and will begin the third in August. She has always liked to write and throughout life had teachers that encouraged her in doing so, they have pushed her forward into taking up challenges and setting high standards to achieve. Medicine college provides great opportunities in diverse areas, seeming to have an immense array of them to explore. She is passionate about helping people and working towards an equal world, where everyone can have their space.

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Iraq: UN human rights report voices concern over conduct of ISIL fighter trials

Teamgum @ TheNextWeb 2014

Statement by the Brexit Steering Group on UK paper on EU citizens in the UK

Libya: ‘Substantial civilian casualties’ in Derna, UN humanitarian chief ‘deeply concerned’

Eurozone: Sovereign debt decreases for the first time since 2007

First-ever global conference of national counter-terrorism chiefs will strengthen cooperation, build ‘resilient’ States, says top UN official

EU announces record €550 million contribution to save 16 million lives from AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria

Why people with disabilities are your company’s untapped resource

Paris is building the world’s greenest business district. What can other cities learn from it?

Employment MEPs reach consensus with Commission on workers’ health and safety

Why the evolution of blockchain reliability is critical to protecting your digital assets

EU-US: A new transatlantic agenda for global change

Yemen war: UN chief urges good faith as ‘milestone’ talks get underway in Sweden

EU: 13 major banks may pay fines 10% of worldwide turnover

Australia’s record heatwave: From fainting tennis players to dead fish

Refugee crisis: Commission proposes a new plan urging EU countries to help Italy

THE COMMITTEES: From the colonies to the space race – past, present, future converge in Fourth Committee

MWC 2016 LIVE: The top 5 themes of this year’s Mobile World Congress

Multilateralism: The only path to address the world’s troubles, signals Guterres

A Sting Exclusive: “eHealth can change many dimensions of how the healthcare area functions”, Polish MEP Michal Boni underscores from Brussels

This man is turning cities into giant sponges to save lives

Italian voters put again the European Peoples in the Brussels picture

COVID-19: How multilateral development banks can lead through a crisis

GSMA Outlines New Developments For MWC19 Shanghai

“They are trying to make improvements, but of course they are quite slow for my generation”, Vice President of JADE Victor Soto on another Sting Exclusive

5 ways the WTO can make investment easier and boost sustainable development

Baku forum to push back against ‘rise of hate’ with strong call for cultural and religious tolerance, says UN official

Rich economies not a promise of education equality, new report finds

This Brooklyn farm company is training a new generation of urban farmers

Women in Iceland have walked out of work to dispute the gender pay gap

Monday’s Daily Brief: drug-resistant diseases, Venezuelan refugees, fighting in Tripoli, and hate speech

Will satellites destroy our view of space?

China is winning the electric vehicle race

Is poverty and exclusion the necessary price for EU’s recovery?

Coronavirus: Commission stands ready to continue supporting EU’s agri-food sector

MEPs back plans to boost joint assessment of medicines

Draghi: A bridge from Brussels to Berlin

Who’s promised net-zero, and who looks likely to get there?

State aid: Commission approves €199.45 million Italian support to compensate Alitalia for damages suffered due to coronavirus outbreak

Polish PM chooses to focus on economy, amid questions on rule of law in Poland

Healthcare workers’ safety: a forgotten necessity

IFMSA and IPSF on the Health of Migrants and Refugees

UN, Somali Government seek $80 million in immediate relief for flood-affected populations

Coronavirus Global Response: European Union organises a humanitarian air bridge to Côte d’Ivoire

FROM THE FIELD: Weeding out Mexico’s unwanted beach invader

Universities need strategic leadership. Here’s what it looks like

One-third of young people still optimistic despite COVID’s dramatic hit on education and jobs

Pandemic versus fear

The fat from your next takeaway meal could help clean up global shipping

90% of plastic polluting our oceans comes from just 10 rivers

Scientists are growing meat on blades of grass

The story of 2018, in 10 charts

How ‘small’ is Europe in Big Data?

FIAT Chrysler: from Geneva Motor show to the World, and back

A Sting Exclusive: “Leading by example! EU must push for UN deal to avoid dangerous climate change”, European Parliament Vice-President Ulrike Lunacek cries out from Brussels

“The Belt and Road Initiative aims to promote peace, development and stability”, Ambassador Zhang of the Chinese Mission to EU highlights from European Business Summit 2018

Countries violate rights over climate change, argue youth activists in landmark UN complaint

There’s a single-use plastic you’ll throw away today without realising

Parliament approves €500 million for schooling of refugee children in Turkey

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s