Doctor in upstate New York creates a mecca for transgender patients

A family doctor practicing in a small city in rural New York has created a center that has some transgender patients traveling for miles to get treatment there, according to The Guardian.

Carolyn Wolf-Gould has tailored her practice in Oneonta to provide compassionate care for transgender patients, a population that's grown from a few individuals she treated in the late 2000s to more than 300 who come to her practice from all over the northeast, according to the report.

They're willing to travel far to see a doctor who has experience in transgender healthcare--or at least one who is open to treating them. 

"These patients are so marginalized, and they deal with so much discrimination and abuse, that we have people coming from four, five, six hours away," Wolf-Gould told the publication. Her center offers hormone therapy, counseling, coordination with other doctors and referrals for patients who want to transition with surgery. But many patients also come for routine healthcare such as annual checkups and mammograms.

Multiple surveys have found transgender people often face hostility and ignorance in many doctor's offices. Many transgender patients skip medical care because of poor experiences.

Many doctors are interested in learning more about transgender care, though. A recent study published in the American Journal of Public Health found that 80 percent of U.S. academic faculty practices surveyed indicated they would like to actively address a lack of policies to identify LGBT-competent physicians and to train their teams to improve competency in treating lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender patients.

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