This Monday through Friday, March 21 to 25, marks the 20th National LGBTQ Health Awareness Week (#LGBTQHealth). Topics to be discussed include HIV, stigma, transgender issues, mental health, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and at-home tests for HIV and STIs.
Another highlighted subject this year is pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), pills or injections taken to prevent an HIV-negative person from contracting the virus. Notably, LGBTQ Health Awareness Week includes a free webinar at 1p.m. ET, Thursday, March 24, titled “Optimizing PrEP in Practice: Guidelines and Clinical Considerations.”
The webinar features Demetre Daskalakis, MD, the director of the Division of HIV Prevention at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), along with Anu Hazra, MD, a sexual health advocate and educator in Chicago affiliated with Howard Brown Health. You can register here or via links in this tweet:
Come check out this #PrEP talk with the extraordinary @dr_demetre and stick around for yours truly. Looking forward to this session and the certainly lively discussion to follow! #IDtwitter #HIVtwitter #STItwitter https://t.co/r7B2yLrPkJ— Anu Hazra (@AnuHazraMD) March 17, 2022
The theme for the 2022 awareness week is “Live Out Loud for LGBTQ Health!” As the organizers explain on LGBTQHealth.org:
The theme encourages everyone to speak openly about LGBTQ health, providing an umbrella under which to discuss and raise awareness of mental health, trans health, and ending stigma through accessible, affirming, and inclusive health care services so that everyone can fully live their truth and a healthy life.
Optimism, relevance, and timeliness are integral to the theme of the week. This theme was developed in part from results of the National Coalition for LGBTQ Health’s Inaugural State of LGBTQ Health National Survey, which features input from nearly 2,500 LGBTQ health providers and highlights the most pressing health care issues faced by LGBTQ communities. The survey report and findings will be released during the week.
This theme also speaks to the importance of raising our collective voice against those telling us, “Don’t Say Gay.” Please join us in shouting “Gay” OUT LOUD as we LIVE OUT LOUD for LGBTQ Health!
What does #LGBTQHealth mean to you? Answer this question and more by participating in our #LGBTQHealthChat on 3/23 at 1 p.m. EDT. Get a sneak peek of additional questions, along with our other events for the week, by visiting https://t.co/tap0xpsfRx pic.twitter.com/OjzTRHKv14— The National Coalition for LGBTQ Health (@Health_LGBTQ) March 18, 2022
Also on the agenda is a Twitter chat at 1 p.m., Wednesday, March 23. Use the hashtag #LGBTQHealthChat to explore questions such as:
- What does LGBTQ health mean to you?
- How does stigma affect LGBTQ health?
- What role does mental health play in supporting LGBTQ health?
- What can clinicians and providers do to support LGBTQ health?
- How can at-home screening for HIV and STIs support LGBTQ Health?
- What role can PrEP play in promoting health for LGBTQ communities?
- What do you think are the most pressing issues for LGBTQ health in the United States?
- What can health care providers do to ensure they are promoting a safe and welcoming environment for transgender people?
- How is your organization working to advance health for LGBTQ communities?
The awareness week is an effort of the National Coalition for LGBTQ Health, a coalition of state and local health departments, advocacy groups, community organizations, researchers and health care providers. Glance at the list of participating partners and you’ll find a range of HIV groups in the mix (AIDS Alabama, Amida Care, APLA Health and GMHC to name just a few). The LGBTQ Health website also includes promotional materials you can download and share on social media.
#LGBTQHealth is for the whole person: mental, physical, and sexual. By prioritizing the entirety of our bodies, we can #StopHIVTogether. Learn more by visiting: https://t.co/Koa0c70zGn pic.twitter.com/cJcvTNeAyf— The National Coalition for LGBTQ Health (@Health_LGBTQ) March 21, 2022