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This article has been peer reviewed. It is the author’s final published version in Transgender Health, Volume 4, Issue 1, January 2019, Pages 18-23.

The published version is available at Copyright © Pryor & Vickroy


Purpose: aTHeNA (a Trans Health Needs Assessment) is a pilot study exploring the perspectives and experiences of trans people in western Massachusetts on and with health care. This study examines research strategies and best practices to improve trans health care by prioritizing the knowledge and recommendations of trans and gender nonbinary people.

Methods: aTHeNA is composed of a focus group of eight trans and gender nonbinary individuals held in western Massachusetts in January of 2016 and qualitative analysis of that focus group to synthesize themes. aTHeNA utilized an interdisciplinary approach. Concepts of respect, care, self-definition, and intersectionality informed study design and analysis.

Results: Key participant recommendations include providing medical care that recognizes and values client self-knowledge, elimination of gender markers in insurance billing, and comprehensive health care team education across inpatient and outpatient settings.

Conclusion: Focus group participants outlined the limitations of current services and envisioned possibilities for a more ideal system. Further research is needed to incorporate trans perspectives into health literature.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.