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By Merin C. MacDonald | Date published: April 4, 2024

Gender Affirming Care Focus of Resident Retreat and Upcoming Summit

In March, Primary Care Track residents held their annual off-campus day-long retreat at the Worcester Historical Museum where they learned about a variety of topics on gender-affirming care.We were fortunate to have local and outside speakers who shared their expertise, and eloquent patients who so passionately shared their journeys,” said Elizabeth Murphy, MD, program director of the Primary Care Track and associate professor of medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine. “Topics included primary care of transgender patients, gender-affirming hormone therapy, gender-affirming voice treatment, health care disparities in transgender patients, researching health care quality in transgender patients, and improving the transgender environment at UMass Chan.” The focus of this year’s retreat was chosen so that residents would have a greater understanding and increased comfort with how to care for this patient population. “I've had residents in the past who have told me that [a patient] opened up to them in a visit and said, ‘I want to live my life as a different gender,’ and they were afraid or didn't know what to say or do,” said Dr. Murphy. “We want to make sure that our residents, if presented with this situation, can provide care that is supportive…”

On May 3, the UMass Chan/UMMH community will also have the opportunity to learn more about caring for the trans and gender-diverse community at the Affirming Health Care for our Trans and Gender Diverse Community Summit. “This summit is a great opportunity to bring together faculty, students, and caregivers across the UMMH and UMass Chan community who are committed to improving care for our trans and gender non-conforming patients,” said Deborah Blazey-Martin, MD, MPH, associate professor of medicine, chief of the Division of General Internal Medicine, and vice chair for ambulatory affairs in the Department of Medicine. “The summit will have posters from across the system covering program implementation, education, and best medical and surgical practices.” The event will feature keynote speaker, Dallas Ducar, MSN, APRN, CEO of Transhealth, as well as a patient and community voices panel facilitated by Dr. Kai da Costa, and a poster session for caregivers, students, and faculty. “I am really looking forward to having so many folks committed to this work in the same place learning about each other and creating connections that will allow for more robust collaboration across the system and better patient care,” said Dr. Blazey-Martin.

Related: Retreat for Primary Care Track Residents to Focus on Gender-Affirming Care 

Residents at a presentation

Residents pose for a photo