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Care at Student Health for Transgender Students
Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How can I schedule an appointment at Student Health?
  2. For General Medicine appointments, students can schedule online (Healthy Hoos, https://www.healthyhoos.virginia.edu) or by phone (434.982.3915). For Gynecology or Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) appointments, students can schedule by phone (Gynecology 434.924.2773, CAPS 434.924.5556). When choosing a General Medicine online appointment, students may select an appointment specifically for “transgender healthcare” (i.e. hormone refills) or an appointment for other medical issues.

  3. How can I indicate my preferred name, gender, or pronouns on Student Health forms?
  4. Students can schedule appointments and then send a Secure Message (through the Healthy Hoos patient portal) to the provider they will see, asking the provider to change gender or pronouns prior to their visit. Students can also ask providers to change preferred names, gender, or pronouns while at the visit.

  5. What care is Student Health currently providing?
  6. Student Health has created a transgender health care team with representatives from Counseling and Psychological Services, General Medicine, Gynecology, Student Disability Access Center, and Office of Health Promotion. We are committed to removing barriers to care for transgender patients at Student Health.

    Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)
    Student Health Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) provides individual and group therapy, crisis consultation, and psychiatric medication management. Transgender students often benefit from psychological support as they navigate the complex world of transition. CAPS clinicians can help students seeking letters to support their transition. Our clinicians can also help connect students with referrals for ongoing treatment in the community, if needed. CAPS providers are happy to see transgender students for non-transgender specific concerns at any time.

    General Medicine
    Student Health General Medicine provides initiation and renewal of hormone therapy, as well as management of general transgender health issues. Of course, General Medicine providers are happy to see transgender students for non-transgender specific health care issues at any time. We know from national data that transgender patients often delay or do not seek preventive health care or sick care.

    Gynecology
    Student Health Gynecology offers services to all students at UVa in need of gynecologic care, including those who are transgender and gender diverse. These services include, but are not limited to (STI testing, contraception, annual wellness visits, breast exams, Pap tests, pelvic exams, evaluation and treatment for menstrual problems, and assessment of vulvar and vaginal symptoms. Student Health Gynecology also offers hormone renewals for students taking estrogen. A certified SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner) nurse practitioner also works at Gynecology; she provides examinations for sexual assault evidence collection, which can take place even if a student is undecided about whether to pursue legal action. All Gynecology staff members provide basic gynecologic care following a sexual assault.

  7. What are the guidelines for STI testing?
  8. CDC updated guidelines in 2015 (http://www.cdc.gov/std/tg2015/screening-recs-2015tg-revised2016.pdf). These guidelines are not transgender-specific healthcare related but rather focus on age and risk factors.

  9. What are the guidelines for health screenings?
  10. Again, these recommendations are not transgender health specific but focus on age and risk factors. Certainly, all young adults should receive skin cancer screening, depression screening, oral health screening, and tobacco use screening annually, and diabetes and heart disease screening as needed.

  11. What care do we provide for people contemplating transition?
  12. Students contemplating transition will meet with providers in General Medicine and CAPS to discuss resources, counseling, and support meetings and to provide education regarding hormone therapy.

  13. What care do we offer to people approaching graduation?
  14. The period of time right after graduation can be a difficult time with many changes, including finding a medical home. The clinicians at Student Health can help refer you to community providers competent in transgender health care needs. These resources are exceptionally helpful: UCSF Center of Excellence for Transgender Health Guidelines and WPATH (World Professional Association for Transgender Health). Finally, the Transgender Health Alliance of Central Virginia (THACVA) provides an updated list of resources (http://www.thacva.org/providers.html).

  15. Thoughts about safety.
  16. Transgender students can be at higher risk for abuse or assault. Use the buddy system when going out, know your limits when it comes to alcohol, and trust your instincts which may be telling you to leave a situation.

  17. Where is Student Health going in term of offering inclusive healthcare?
  18. Our goal is to create a comprehensive primary care transgender clinic at Student Health, which provides all the support and medical care that a student may need while transitioning. We follow the UCSF Center of Excellence for Transgender Health Guidelines. One of our General Medicine nurse practitioners, Elke Zschaebitz, is currently pursuing WPATH Certification. We’d like transgender students to feel like they have a medical home at Student Health. Please let us know what we can do to provide better services.