The Victorian government has funded new healthcare hubs for trans and gender diverse people in Melbourne and regional Victoria.
Your Community Health will operate multi-disciplinary clinics in Preston and Ballarat, offering gender-related care including endocrinology, as well as counselling, sexual health care, and general medical care for the trans community.
The new care hubs follow a period of consultation between the Victorian government and the trans community to identify areas of need, Star Observer has reported.
The state government’s initiative also involves a training program for doctors across Victoria to increase their competence in treating trans people.
Jeremy Wiggins from Your Community Health said that the organisation has considered the different needs of people in regional and urban areas.
“As a consortium, we will work together to address these needs,” he said.
“There aren’t high numbers of service providers who are experienced with this area of health, which is why the training component of this initiative is so vital.
“People living in regional areas may not have great access to transport, and it’s even a challenge that many don’t have access to high speed internet.
“Safety is a concern for trans and gender diverse people living in regional areas.
“Providing safe and accessible services whilst developing trust with communities is paramount.”
The clinics have Peer Navigators, professionals who are trans themselves, to support people in accessing health care.
“We have a Peer Navigator located at Ballarat Community Health who can support community members by providing information, support and referral to health services,” said Wiggins.
“We are also fortunate to have regional representation on our Consumer Advisory Group so that we have a direct connection to people living in the area who can help guide us about what is needed.”
Booking an appointment with a Peer Navigator at a Your Community Health clinic is free.
The Preston care hub can be reached on (03) 8470 1111, and the Ballarat hub on (03) 5338 4500.