Lesbians and Their Health Essays

Lesbians and Their Health Essays

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Most LGBTQ people fear getting a homophobic response from their HCPs and are afraid of receiving lesser quality treatment due to a lack of trust in their HCPs. For this reason, many LGBTQ people avoid routine health care, which can have severe health consequences.
A large gap in the knowledge demonstrated by HCPs has been created due to the limited research in the area of lesbian health and has further resulted in misinformed advice and diagnosis given to their lesbian clients. An example of such a misunderstanding is that annual papanicolaou (PAP) examinations are not required because of the belief that lesbians are at little risk of contracting the human papilloma virus (HPV). However, it was found that women who have sexual partners who are women are in fact facing an increased risk for developing gynecological cancers resulting from HPV (Goldberg et al., 2009). It was also found that lesbians are at an increased risk of developing breast cancer due to a number of factors including increased age at first child birth, limited use of oral contraceptives, as well as tobacco and alcohol use (Goldberg et al., 2009). However, even though lesbians are at higher risks of developing several diseases, they would rather avoid the healthcare system in general, or are more likely to seek out queer HCPs or alternative healthcare services that will offer them a safe and welcoming environment. These alternatives are all measures taken to avoid a potentially demeaning response from their HCPs. This is particularly problematic because if a healthcare service that addresses their needs is not geographically or financially accessible to them, then they are ultimately discouraged from pursuing healthcare measures and are thus at a greater risk for...

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..., A. (2013) Long-term care for older lesbian and bisexual women: An analysis of
current research and policy. Social Work in Public Health, 28, 596-606. doi: 10.1080/19371918.2011.593468
Kelleher, C. (2009). Minority stress and health: Implications for lesbian, gay, bisexual,
transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) young people. Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 22(4), 373-379. doi:10.1080/09515070903334995
Stott, D. B. (2013). The training needs of general practitioners in the exploration of sexual health
matters and providing healthcare to lesbian, gay and bisexual patients. Medical Teacher, 35(9), 752-759. doi:10.3109/0142159x.2013.801943
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2011). Healthy People 2020 objectives:
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender health. Retrieved from http://www.healthypeople.gov/2020/topicsobjectives2020/overview.aspx?topicid=25

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