LGBTQ Community Members Commonly Delay Preventive Health Care

Transgender men and gender non-conforming people in our region commonly delay or never seek preventive health care, Susan G. Komen Puget Sound announced today in a release of findings from its research on LGBTQ experiences with providers. Based on the findings, Komen Puget Sound and a coalition of partners have begun to develop an LGBTQ breast health toolkit for health care providers and the LGBTQ community.

Komen Puget Sound Community Advocate Eli Grossman presents findings from his research about LGBTQ health care experiences in Western Washington.

Komen Puget Sound Community Advocate Eli Grossman presents findings from his research about LGBTQ health care experiences in Western Washington.

The research found that only 60 percent of LGBTQ people age 50-74 have received their recommended mammogram in the past two years. This compares with 76 percent of the general population in the Komen Puget Sound region who received their recommended mammogram.

In addition, many of those interviewed did not understand the risk factors for breast cancer. Six out of 7 interviewees assigned male at birth said they received no information on breast health while they were growing up; and 3 out of 10 interviewees assigned female at birth also said they received no information on breast health.

Fifty-three percent of the LGBTQ community members said they always go to a provider who specializes in LGBTQ health or is sensitive to LGBTQ identities. Still, only 29% rate their provider as excellent in their ability to understand patients’ gender identities and/or sexual orientation.

Through an online questionnaire of 74 and 17 in-person interviews, Komen Puget Sound Community Advocate Elijah Grossman surveyed members of the LGBTQ community about their experiences accessing health care. Access the full report here.