Transgender Health Conference to focus on clincal service, science and community
The full conference program for the biennial Australian New Zealand Professional Association for Transgender Health is now available online.
The conference aims to improve the health and well-being of people in the transgendered community. Historically the trans community has been marginalised when it comes to issues of health care and community service and the conference aims to address these issues.
ANZPATH will be held in South Australia in October and the theme for this yeat’s conference is Clinical Service, Science and Community.
According to organisers the 2014 ANZPATH conference has been designed with three over arching goals - to promote excellence in clinical service, strengthen the ties of the gender diverse community and enhance the relationship between that community and its service providers.
Recent studies have shown significant gaps in service between the health care of transgender people and that of the community at large. Increasingly it is being realised that transgender people have very specific health concerns and would benefit from better peer support and dedicated medical and counselling services.
ANZPATH President Dr Rob Lyons said a recent peer review study had shown an increase in queer questioning and gender questioning youth. Lyons said the study also found 1.2 per cent of NZ students identified as transgender.
“At the same time here in Australia we're experiencing exponential growth in demand for counselling and other services which indicates Australia's Transgender population is also substantially larger than has been historically believed. Lyons said.
“This is why we're engaging with professional experts and community advocates from across the globe and around the country in order to deliver the most important conference ever held in Australia focused solely on the bio-psycho-social needs of the Trans* and Gender Diverse communities,” said Lyons.
Yet Lyons points out in spite of an increase in Trans awareness and many positive changes in terms of recognition and services for the trans community, transgender people still face some of the highest rates of unemployment, mental illness and associated self harm.
Lyons said; “We're at a critical juncture – our failure to take decisive action now will ultimately lead to ever more serious levels of distress amongst Transgender people over coming decades.
“We believe this conference will be an important catalyst for positive social change for Transgender people”
ANZPATH takes place from October 4-6 at the University of Adelaide