Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Health
Among the APA's goals is to expand psychology's role in advancing health and in decreasing health disparities. The introductory summary of the Institute of Medicine's 2011 report, "The Health of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender People: Building a Foundation for a Better Understanding," states:
"Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals experience unique health disparities. Although the acronym LGBT is used as an umbrella term, and the health needs of this community are often grouped together, each of these letters represents a distinct population with its own health concerns. Furthermore, among lesbians, gay men, bisexual men and women, and transgender people, there are subpopulations based on race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, geographic location, age and other factors."
Compounding this is that there are at present no large scale population data sets that include information about sexual orientation and gender identity, and LGBT people have been the subject of relatively little health research. In addition to these issues, LGBT people face barriers to equitable health care that profoundly affects their overall well-being.
The information and resources provided on this page represent an ongoing effort by the APA's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Concerns Office to bring together recent and ongoing policy and advocacy work in LGBT health disparity areas, and both in government agencies and the non-profit health care community to address these issues.
Distinct LGBT Populations Affected by Health Disparities
- Ending Conversion Therapy: Supporting and Affirming LGBTQ Youth
A comprehensive report that provides an in-depth review of research and clinical expertise related to conversion therapy. Makes clear that conversion therapy is not an appropriate therapeutic approach based on the evidence; explores alternative ways to discuss sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression with young people. By the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
Recommendations for promoting the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender adolescents: a position paper of the society for adolescent health and medicine
Journal of Adolescent Health, April 2013
Building on the Affordable Care Act to Make the Health System Work for Young Gay Men: An Action Plan (PDF, 5MB)
This Trust for America's Health report lays out five priority domains important for creating a healthcare system that can meet the needs of young gay men.
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Aging
Resources to address the unique disparities facing a growing population of older LGBT adults.
HIV: Know the RISKS. Get the FACTS. Older Adults and HIV/AIDS Toolkit
Department of Health and Human Services, Administration on Aging
Improving the Lives of Transgender Older Adults: Recommendations for Policy and Practice
A new report examines the social, economic and service barriers facing transgender older adults, by SAGE and the National Center for Transgender Equality.
Caring and Aging with Pride Project report:
Disparities and Resilience among Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Older Adults (PDF, 3.75MB) from the Institute for Multigenerational Health
Ethnic Minorities and Women
A semi-annual publication of the APA Office of Ethnic Minority Affairs
Minority Stress and Physical Health Among Sexual Minorities
This article reviews empirical findings related to LGB physical health disparities and argues that such disparities are related to the experience of stress caused by experiences with antigay stigma.
Perspectives on Psychological Science, September 2013
The National Lesbian Health Organization
APA Office on AIDS
The American Psychological Association's Office on AIDS provides information, training and technical assistance on a wide range of HIV/AIDS-related topics.
Best Practices in HIV Prevention: Translating Innovation into Action
National LGBT Health Education Center
A multi-media educational course that includes videos and slides from a September 2013 summit of experts about implementing strategies for HIV prevention into clinical practice.
When Health Care Isn't Caring: Lambda Legal's Survey on Discrimination Against LGBT People and People Living with HIV
This survey is the first to examine refusal of care and barriers to health care among LGBT and HIV communities on a national scale.
Addressing Mental Health Issues to Improve HIV Prevention Intervention Outcomes (PDF, 1.21MB)
Mental health problems can pose a particular challenge to the effectiveness of HIV prevention interventions. This document outlines ways in which mental health problems can affect the outcome of HIV prevention interventions and how agencies can better address the mental health needs of consumers seeking HIV prevention services.
Ending the HIV Epidemic Among Gay Men in the United States (PDF, 1.3MB) amfAR Issue Brief, September 2012
The brief examines how AIDS continues to pose a grave threat for gay men in the U.S., who constitute the largest proportion of new HIV infections, that young men who have sex with men (MSM) are the only risk group for which HIV incidence appears to be increasing, and that for gay men of color, the crisis is especially dire.
Estimated HIV Incidence in the United States, 2006-2009, Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Summary.
Aug. 3, 2011
A New HIV Prevention Paradigm for Gay and Bisexual Men in the U.S. (PDF, 1.3MB) amfAR Issue Brief, June 2011
The Affordable Care Act and LGBT Families: Everything You Need to Know
Center for American Progress, Family Equality Council, May 23, 2013
A useful tool for psychologists and students working with health care consumers.
National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey: Special Reports 2010
Findings on Victimization by Sexual Orientation Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2010
Government Agencies Connected with LGBT Health
- Health and Human Services
- Institute of Medicine
- National Institutes of Health
- Veterans Affairs
2015 Annual Report of the Department of Health and Human Services LGBT Issues Coordinating Committee
Advancing LGBT health and well-being.
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services: Making Improvements for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) Americans; an overview of initiatives.
The Office of Minority Health within the Office of the Secretary of Health and Human Services released its new National Partnership for Action to Eliminate Health Disparities, which includes the LGBT-inclusive National Stakeholder Strategy for Achieving Health Equity. The Partnership welcomes LGBT advocates, organizations, and providers in a wide-ranging effort to eliminate health disparities, including those that affect the LGBT community. Check out the strategy, share your thoughts, and sign up for the Partnership on the Office of Minority Health.
Feedback on The National Stakeholder Strategy for Achieving Health (PDF, 55KB) by Linda A. Travis, PsyD, co-chair, Div. 44 (Society for the Psychological Study of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Issues) Health Initiatives Task Force
May 11, 2012
Medicare finalizes new rules to require equal visitation rights for all hospital patients
New requirements empower patients to designate their own visitors, including a same-sex domestic partner
Nov. 17, 2010
Institute of Medicine calls for expanded federal support for LGBT health research
By Howard Kurtzman
Psychological Science Agenda
The Health of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender People: Building a Foundation for Better Understanding
A Consensus Report
March 31, 2011
- Collecting Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Data in Electronic Health Records: Workshop Summary
Dec. 20, 2012
- NIH Request for Information: The Health and Health Research Needs, Specific Health Issues and Concerns for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex (LGBTI) Populations, Summary of Comments (PDF, 382.29KB)
Testimony of Clinton W. Anderson, PhD on behalf of the American Psychological Association to the Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Health Issues and Research Gaps and Opportunities; Institute of Medicine, Washington.
Feb. 1, 2010
NIH continues implementation of IOM's recommendations for LGBTI health research
Psychological Science Agenda
NIH report in response to the IOM's "The Health of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender People: Building a Foundation for Better Understanding"
- NIH Director's statement
- Advancing LGBT health research
- Consideration of the IOM Report (PDF, 659KB)
NIH invites broad range of research on LGBTI health
In the Public Interest
SAMHSA Promises Creation of New Task Force On LGBT Youth Suicide Prevention
APA member inquiries about this task force's status should be directed to SAMSHA Administrator Pamela Hyde and copied to our office.
Nov. 19, 2010