EMSA says for Pride Month

Pride is the annual month-long celebration of LGBTQI+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex and many more) individuals. It is usually celebrated each year in June to honour the 1969 Stonewall uprisings in Manhattan; a protest for gay liberation in America. In Europe, the Pride event was recognised in 1992, usually held annually and celebrated in different cities in the continent in different weeks of the month and it is termed as EuroPride.

EMSA, as an Association representing Medical Studens across Europe values celebrating Pride month, because for us it is important to highlight the need for a more inclusive medical curriculum in Europe and to ensure a learning platform for medical students, free of discrimination and bias. Such issues we have today in healthcare, cause many LGBTQI+ individuals to feel intimidated searching for health provision i.e to go to a hospital or get the necessary treatment they need; these reservations they have might in turn decrease their quality of life, affect their mental health and might even lead to more serious health problems. With proper education and awareness, we can make hospitals and clinics safe spaces for LGBTQI+ individuals to visit. 

To achieve this, doctors should be open minded, knowledgable and accommodating enough for LGBTQI+ patients to be open about their sexual and mental health with as much dignity as their heterosexual and cisgender counterparts when it can help with their diagnosis and treatment. They should not feel ashamed of their identities and orientations when it comes to talking about them during hospital visits. Certain health issues that are more concerning to the LGBTQI+ community should be treated with professionalism; their sexual health should be taken seriously and not neglected. 

Some of the topics we can focus more, as a way to spread awareness on and empower medical students are:

  • Genetic and anatomic variants of people when it comes to their genitals (androgen insensitivity syndrome, SOX9 translocations etc.) to help people see that gender is not a topic of dichotomy but it contains diversity even in phenotypic forms,
  • LGBTQI+ terminology to help people stay informed about different gender identities and sexual orientations to be able to understand their patients and colleagues better,
  • Advocacy and policy writing initiatives to ensure equal access to healthcare and legal rights for the LGBTQI+ community to have better standards in life. 

Utilising social media, webinars, online trainings and mobility projects – when the situation regarding COVID19 improves – plays a huge role in achieving all this and EMSA is dedicated to fulfill its share of work, not only during Pride month, but throughout the years. 

Survey on LGBTQI+ inclusivity and education in Healthcare Settings

[DDL: 30/06/2020 23:59 CEST]

On behalf of the Medical Ethics and Human Rights & the European Integration and Culture Pillars, we are happy to share with you this survey, as an attempt to gain further knowledge on medical students’ perceptions on LGBTQI+ inclusivity and education during Pride Month.

The goal of this survey is to gather information on where medical students stand in terms of LGBTQI+ familiarisation of Medical Students, inclusiveness of LGBTQI+ individuals in Healthcare Settings, LGBTQI+ in Medical Education and Human Rights Based Approach. 

The results of this survey will be incorporated in our Policy Paper on LGBTQI+ Health and Rights, as well as any other advocacy tools prepared by EMSA on LGBTQI+ Health and Rights matters.

It should take a maximum of 10 minutes to complete and your contribution is highly valuable.