There have been a fair number of articles in the mainstream media and blogosphere recently highlighting the problem of transgender patients finding competent, accessible healthcare in the United States.
The most recent story has been today’s announcement by Washington D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray concerning efforts to improve trans healthcare in the city. Within the last few weeks, Scientific American had an article on their website about the problem; the blog RH Reality Check also spoke out recently on the issue; Al Jazeera America focused specifically on the problem of aging transfolk have with healthcare costs in retirement; The Colorado Independent covered trans heathcare struggles in that state. It’s not a tidal wave yet, but there does seem to be — finally! — some media momentum on highlighting this issue.
It’s good that this topic is getting play in the mainstream media, as it’s one that is very much a vital, even life-or-death issue for transfolk. High risk for depression and suicide; high chance of poverty and joblessness; high chance of seeking out black-market medications and procedures. This is the threat that so many transfolk face when they do not have adequate access to even basic health care that addresses their unique needs. Let’s hope that this momentum is just that, momentum, and not just a momentary spike in a typically disinterested society.