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AIIMS Delhi

Delhi: AIIMS to open specialized center for transgender healthcare

November 29, 2023

AIIMS, Delhi is currently in discussions with a division of the health ministry to establish a dedicated center that offers comprehensive and holistic care for transgender individuals.

Maneesh Singhal, the head of the Department of Burns and Plastic Surgery, mentioned that the goal is to have the center operational within the next 4-5 months, situated at the burns and plastic surgery block at AIIMS. He shared that consultations are ongoing with the National Aids Control Organization (NACO) and the Ministry of Health to create a ‘Centre of Excellence for Transgender Healthcare.’

Singhal explained that the decision to establish a specialized center arises from recognizing the challenges faced by the transgender community in accessing healthcare services due to societal biases and stigma, resulting in their hesitation to seek help.

The envisioned center aims to provide surgeries tailored to the needs of transgender individuals, offering endocrinology and psychiatry services under one roof.

Singhal discussed these plans during a three-day workshop designed to equip healthcare professionals with advanced skills to address the unique needs of transgender and gender-diverse individuals. The workshop, conducted in collaboration with the Association for Transgender Health in India (ATHI) and the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH), focuses on the theme of “Addressing felt-need for training and capacity building of care providers.”

Singhal emphasized the collaborative efforts with the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, NACO, and the Ministry of Health to establish a ‘Centre of Excellence for Transgender Healthcare’ at AIIMS. He acknowledged the challenge of a shortage of trained care providers and training centers in India, hindering the delivery of standardized, affordable, accessible, and holistic healthcare to transgender persons and gender-diverse individuals.

The workshop, facilitated by certified faculty from the Global Education Institute (GEI) of WPATH and the University of Colorado, USA, along with domain experts from the Indian Professional Association for Transgender Health (IPATH), is seen as a crucial step in equipping healthcare professionals with advanced skills to meet the distinctive needs of the transgender community. Special focus is given to mental health strategies to enhance the well-being of transgender individuals.

Also read: Delhi Police, AIIMS raise awareness on power DNA to fight rape

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