Over 2000 lifesaving health services for TGD Victorians
13 Nov 2020
JOINT RELEASE with Your Community Health, Austin Health, Ballarat Community Health
Over 2000 appointments have been provided to trans, gender diverse and non-binary Victorians from a new model of inclusive, gender-affirming health service. November 22nd 2020 marks one year since the launch of the Victorian Trans and Gender Diverse Health Service and its two multi-disciplinary clinics based in Preston and Ballarat.
The program is improving health access and outcomes for trans, gender diverse and non-binary Victorian adults, through the delivery of state-wide, bulk billed services. The service has been able to support some of the most isolated Victorians living in regional and remote areas of Victoria by utilising a mixture telehealth and outreach clinics. Clients have also benefited from reduced wait times compared to common experiences at other clinics.
Led by Your Community Health, in partnership with Austin Health, Ballarat Community Health and Thorne Harbour Health, and funded by the Victorian Government, services include peer navigation, general practice, hormone therapy initiation, counselling, endocrinology, nursing, peer support and warm referral into broader community health services such as allied health and dental.
“Our state-wide service has seen extraordinary growth during a very challenging year with COVID-19 and we are proud of our achievements. We have supported community members with their essential health needs and also increased employment for community members in professional roles,” said Your Community Health Chief Executive Officer, Phillip Bain.
The new Victorian service has paved the way for Australia with a new model of care, integrating Peer Navigators into a medical environment.
“Our Peer Navigators are the concierge of our health service, they greet and welcome our valued clients, provide them with information, referral and support and continue to be available for follow up appointments,” said Jeremy Wiggins, Project Manager.
“This level of support is unprecedented and absolutely necessary for our communities who often experience multiple barriers in accessing quality healthcare. I often get phone calls from our clients who tell me personally that our service has literally saved their life. There is no doubt in my mind that this Victorian service is providing lifesaving health care,” Wiggins continued. The success of this model comes as a result of the hard work and determination of our trans and gender diverse community advocates and a collaborative commitment by implementing organisations to design and deliver services with the community.
The community health sector is well experienced in supporting those most at risk of health inequalities and it is hoped the success of the Victorian Trans and Gender Diverse Health Service in such a short time will lead to the securing of ongoing support for the expansion of services.
To access this service: Victorians can register online at: https://www.yourcommunityhealth.org.au/trans-and-gender-diverse-health/