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Introduction: People who identify themselves, as members of the LGBTQIA+ community are diverse, coming from all walks of life, and include people of all races and ethnicities, ages, socioeconomic statuses and from all parts of the country. A Meta analysis study conducted by the CDC in 2017 estimates that nearly one million adults in the US is transgender (CDC). Despite the fact that these individuals are members of every community, they continue to experience barriers in accessing health care services such as discrimination, unwelcoming attitudes, and lack of understanding and fear from providers and staff in many health care settings (CDC and GLMA). Consequently, LGBTQIA+ individuals are often reluctant to seek medical care except in situations that feel urgent and even then, many still will not access health care services. Other barriers and challenges that lead to disparity in healthcare for the LGBTQIA+ community mirror those faced by women as well, including lack of reliable and affordable healthcare insurance, high co-pay and hidden fees at the time of payment especially as it relates to sexual healthcare and longer and unexpected wait times. Community resources to inform and guide women and LGBTQIA+ persons of free clinics and healthcare settings that provide culturally competent medical care and prevention services to this population are lacking. This presentation will discuss one authors’ journey to reliable and affordable healthcare as limited and discriminatory and how that led to the development of a survey she designed to understand the user and their thoughts on how to streamline the process of finding a free clinic. The process of developing a mobile geographical application that provides detailed information about community clinics specializing in healthcare services for women and LGBTQIA+ individuals will also be addressed.
Objective: A clear need to provide the community with an application that was easy to use, supply basic logistical information regarding free clinics, and the ability to specify what services were available regarding women’s and LGBTQ+ sexual health.
Methods: Analyzing existing applications that provide similar services presented the shortcomings and successes of what currently exists. Using data from surveys and interviews, user personas helped develop an empathetic understanding of the targeted demographics’ goals, wants, and needs when using the application. Data from a virtual card sort was collected to dictate how the information within the application was arranged. Usability testing with a prototype determined the viability of the design and its effciency in meeting the user's goals.
Results: From participant responses, it was determined that this technology would have tremendous benefits to the under-represented community of women and LGBTQIA+ members seeking qualified, cost prohibitive health care services. Themes gathered from the focus group participants include: • Autonomy • Privacy • Advocacy
Conclusion: Although there is an identified need for this particular mobile application, the prototype remains in a hiatus status as other design assignments have prioritized and occupied the time that could be devoted to this product launch. The intent is to continue to develop this product and make it available in the near future.
SGSH Attitudes and Awareness
Newell, BA, V; Jack, PhD, RN, D.; and Bouchaud, PhD, MSN, CNS, RN, CRRN, M., "Revolutionizing Health Care Access: Developing a Mobile App for Women and LGBTQIA+ Community Members" (2020). Sex and Gender Health Education Summit 2020 – Virtual Meeting. 11.