When Patients Identify as Gay, Lesbian, or Transgender, Cancer Care May Be Less Than Ideal

Transgender patients are at least 50 percent less likely to be screened for certain cancers.

Most oncologists say they don’t know enough about how to treat patients in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community, according to new research published January 16, 2019, in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. But most are also interested in learning more, the research found.

Researchers from the NYU School of Medicine and Moffitt Cancer Center surveyed 450 oncologists from 45 NCI-designated cancer centers around the United States to gauge their level of knowledge with regard to treating people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender, as well as their attitude, behavior, and willingness to learn more about serving this community....continue reading on Everyday Health

Cancer care has a long way to go to meet LGBTQ patient’s needs

LGBTQ patients have unique risk factors for cancer and oncologists admit they don’t know enough about them, a new national survey reveals.

The LGBTQ population’s health care needs are often different from those of cis-hetero patients, including when it comes to cancer detection and treatment. Sexual and gender minority individuals are at higher risk for certain cancers, and barriers to health care for this group are well-documented — but even when these patients make it to the doctor’s office, physicians may be unprepared to meet their needs.

A new national survey of oncologists found that most providers feel they don’t know enough about the specific health needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender patients.

Asked about six aspects of cancer care and prevention among LGBTQ patients — including the effects of screening interventions, lifestyle risk factors and access to health insurance — many of the 149 oncologists who responded to the survey reported not knowing the facts or not being confident in their knowledge. All of the doctors work at National Cancer Institute-designated cancer centers. ...continue reading on Huffington Post

Chris Harris Tribute Fund

Christian Harris, born in Providence, RI on December 23, 1967 to Beverly Boulton Cottam of Boynton Beach, FL and the late Robert L. Harris of South Kingstown, RI, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by family and close friends on Wednesday, January 9, 2019 “What’s up, ProviDANCE?” is a question familiar to anyone who has… Read more »

Should Doctors Ask Patients About Their Sexual Orientation?

Is the Topic Too Personal?

Doctors ask their patients a lot of highly personal questions. They’ll tackle serious topics such as domestic violence and depression, and have no problem asking their patients potentially embarrassing questions about bowel movements and menstrual cycles.

But when it comes to gender identity and sexual orientation, many doctors avoid the topic.

“They’re worried that asking about someone’s sexual identity is too personal and won’t be perceived as clinically relevant,” says Liz Margolies, executive director of the National LGBT (Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender) Cancer Network, who conducts cultural competency training sessions for doctors. “They are afraid to ask because they think it will be too intrusive.”

But here’s the thing, Margolies says. “We want to be asked.”...continue reading on Medscape

National LGBT Cancer Network Wins $2.5M Federal Award Expanding State Efforts to Combat Tobacco-Related Cancers in LGBTQ Communities

The CDC Just Made a Big Move to Help Stop Cancer in LGBT Smokers

(New York, NY September 5, 2018) The National LGBT Cancer Network is the newest recipient of a $2.5 million five year award from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to expand resources for their grantees serving LGBTQ people at risk for tobacco-related cancers.

“The LGBTQ communities smoke at rates significantly higher than other populations. That alone increases our cancer risks dramatically,” said Liz Margolies, the Executive Director of the National LGBT Cancer Network.

The Cancer Network’s new award will expand their NYC presence to Providence, RI, the base for their Principal Investigator, Dr. Scout. For more than a decade, Dr. Scout has led this CDC health priority at other agencies. He emphasizes that the next five years will bring a new vision for this work: “We are really looking to expand the online knowledgebase and toolbox for LGBTQ community members at risk for cancer, living with cancer, and policymakers serving us. ...continue reading on Hornet.com

Conversation with Stupid Cancer

Matthew Zachary of Stupid Cancer interviews our Executive Director Liz Margolies

Clinical Oncologists Lead the Movement to Improve Cancer Care for LGBT People

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) cancer patients (and those who love them) experience extra challenges after diagnosis and continuing many years post treatment. There is research to show that LGBT cancer survivors report lower satisfaction with their cancer care than heterosexual survivors and these differences extend to their quality of life following treatment.  Lesbian… Read more »

Leveling the Playing Field for LGBT Patients

The National LGBT Cancer Network is making cancer screenings more available to a high-risk, underserved population.

Imagine that you find a lump under your skin, or that you’re having trouble breathing, or are in pain. You’re afraid you might have a serious health problem — possibly cancer — but you’re also reluctant to go to the doctor.

Why might you postpone or avoid contact with the health care system? Maybe you can’t afford health insurance or a have a history of negative experiences with hospitals and doctors.

So you keep putting off that doctor’s appointment, and, potentially, you keep getting sicker.

That’s the experience of many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people, who, according to studies, face a greater risk of getting cancer due to risk factors like tobacco and alcohol use, yet are less likely to seek and benefit from health care. Ultimately, this could mean that cancer is picked up at a later stage, when it is more difficult to treat....continue reading on curetoday.com

‘Negative experiences,’ lack of research impede cancer care in LGBTQ community

Upon receipt of a cancer diagnosis, bias and judgement from medical providers should not be a concern for patients.

However, research has shown that patients who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer (LGBTQ) regularly experience increased anxiety and fear discrimination in medical situations. LGBTQ cancer survivors consistently report lower satisfaction with medical care, and gay, bisexual and transgender men who survive cancer appear more likely to experience depression or relationship difficulties.

Barriers to care exist in these communities, as well....continue reading on Healio.com