LGBT+ health teaching within the undergraduate medical curriculum

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Abstract

Introduction: The lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT+) population experience health and social inequalities, including discrimination within healthcare services. There is a growing international awareness of the importance of providing healthcare professionals and students with dedicated training on LGBT+ health. Methods: We introduced a compulsory teaching programme in a large London-based medical school, including a visit from a transgender patient. Feedback was collected across four years, before (n = 433) and after (n = 541) the session. Student confidence in using appropriate terminology and performing a clinical assessment on LGBT+ people was assessed with five-point Likert scales. Fisher exact tests were used to compare the proportion responding “agree” or “strongly agree”. Results: Of the students, 95% (CI 93–97%) found the teaching useful with 97% (96–99%) finding the visitor’s input helpful. Confidence using appropriate terminology to describe sexual orientation increased from 62% (58–67%) to 93% (91–95%) (Fisher p < 0.001) and gender identity from 41% (36–46%) to 91% (88–93%) (p < 0.001). Confidence in the clinical assessment of a lesbian, gay or bisexual patient increased from 75% (71–79%) to 93% (90– 95%) (p < 0.001), and of a transgender patient from 35% (31–40%) to 84% (80–87%) (p < 0.001). Discussion: This teaching programme, written and delivered in collaboration with the LGBT+ community, increases students’ confidence in using appropriate language related to sexual orientation and gender identity, and in the clinical assessment of LGBT+ patients.

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Salkind, J., Gishen, F., Drage, G., Kavanagh, J., & Potts, H. W. W. (2019). LGBT+ health teaching within the undergraduate medical curriculum. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16(13). https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16132305

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