The New York City Health Department recalled during the LGBTQ Health Awareness Week the resources and recommendations that the city offers for the transgender community.
In a tweet, the department listed three of its tips: avoid injecting silicone, take hormones prescribed by a doctor, and ask your doctor what routine tests you need.
The recommendations are given just before the International Day of Transgender Visibility is celebrated on March 31.
Physical Health Recommendations
Get regular medical care
- Find a health care provider you trust.
- Get the right health care: Ask your health care provider what routine tests you need. These may include screening for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, HIV, and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
- If you use hormones or silicone, let your doctor know so you can get the care you need.
- Know your health care rights: In New York, health insurance must cover treatments recommended by your doctor, including surgeries and hormone therapy.
Stay safe during the transition
- Gender transition takes time: transition at your own pace with the help of a doctor or nurse and a support group.
- If you take hormones, be patient: Changes don’t happen overnight. Taking additional hormones can be harmful and will not speed up your transition.
- Silicone can quickly mold to your body, but it can cause scarring or even death. Avoid injecting silicone.
- If you inject hormones or silicone, use a new needle each time. Sharing hormone vials and/or syringes carries the risk of exposure to B, Hepatitis C and HIV.
Take steps to prevent HIV
- Condoms remain one of the best ways to prevent
HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. There are many different types,
including the female condom, also known as FC2.
- Use condoms even with someone you trust: Many people get HIV from having sex with a steady partner and not using a condom.
- Use water-based or silicone-based lubricant, especially for anal sex. Using lubricant reduces the risk of bleeding or breaking a condom.
- Get tested for HIV at least every six months.
- Get tested for other sexually transmitted diseases at least once a year.
- If you are concerned about exposure to HIV, talk to your provider about PrEP and PEP.
- PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) is a daily pill that can protect you against HIV.
- PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) is an emergency medication that can stop HIV if started right after a possible exposure.
If you have HIV, get treatment
- Receiving the news that you have HIV can be difficult
agree. Friends and support groups can help.
- If you have HIV, get treatment: The sooner
start treatment, the less harm HIV does to
your body. And if you take your HIV meds
every day, you are much less likely to transmit HIV to other people.
- You can get HIV medications even if you don’t have insurance and regardless of your immigration status.
health recommendations emotional
take care of your emotional health
Take care of your body
- Stay physically active and get enough sleep.
- Eat regular, healthy meals.
- Be careful with alcohol and drugs.
- Do not smoke. If you smoke, call 3-1-1 for free support to quit smoking.
have healthy relationships
- Get help if you are in an abusive relationship. Abuse takes many forms: it can be physical, sexual, or emotional, and it can involve threats or insults.
- If abuse is a problem, call 9-1-1 in an emergency,
or call the hotline from the New York City Center Against Violence 24 hours a day at 212-714-1141.
Connect with others
- Share your experiences at one of New York City’s transgender groups.
- Build your education and career – be a role model for transgender New Yorkers.
Resources for the transgender community
Transgender Friendly Health Clinics
- APICHA Community Health Center
Manhattan: 212.334.6029 | www.apicha.org
- Callen-Lorde Community Health Center
(with separate clinic for youth ages 13-24)
Manhattan: 212.271.7200 | www.callen-lorde.org
- Children’s Hospital at Montefiore
LGBTQ Youth and Families Program (for youth ages 13-21)
Bronx: 718.882.0023, ext. 211 | www.cham.org
- CK Life-Bronx Transgender Health Space
(Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center)
Bronx: 917.979.3255 | www.blhfamilymed.com
- Community Healthcare Network
Queens: 718.883.8635 | Bronx: 718.320.6765
Brooklyn: 347.578.1743 | Manhattan: 646.276.3383
- HEAT: Health Education & Alternatives for Teens
(for youth ages 13-24) Brooklyn: 718.467.4446
- Housing Works
Brooklyn: 718.277.0386 | Manhattan: 212.677.7999
- Metropolitan Hospital Comprehensive LGBT Health Center
Manhattan: 212.423.7292 | nyc.gov/hhc
- Mount Sinai Beth Israel, LGBT Family Health
Manhattan: 212.604.1800 | www.wehealny.org
- Mount Sinai Beth Israel, Peter Krueger Clinic
(medical care for people living with HIV)
Manhattan: 212.420.2620 | www.wehealny.org
- Persist Health Project
(health referrals for sex workers)
718.635.1791 | www.persisthealthproject.org
- Special Treatment and Research (STAR) Program
Brooklyn: 718.270.3745 | www.starprogram.nyc
- For free or low-cost health insurance, call 3-1-1 for an enrollment location near you.
- For referrals to health care providers call Destination Tomorrow al 347-291-1732.
- For more information about HIV and STDs, including where to get free and confidential testing or PrEP or PEP to prevent HIV, call 3-1-1 or visit nyc.gov and search for “HIV”.
- To find out where to get free condoms call 3-1-1 or visit nyc.gov/condoms.
- For assistance with care, treatment and housing, call 3-1-1 or text *CARE to 877877.
- For shelter spaces and emergency housing for youth up to age 24, call street work project al . 800-708-6600, al Ali Forney Center at 212-206-0574 or to La Puerta at 212-941-9090.
- For trans-friendly school and after-school programs,
call to Instituto Hetrick-Martin al 212.674.2400.
- To change your gender marker on a certified New York City birth, call 3-1-1 or visit nyc.gov and look for “Change Birth Certificate“.
- For legal support, or to report discrimination, call the Sylvia Rivera Law Project at 212-337-8550, the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund at 646-862-9396, Immigration Equality at 212.714.2904, the Urban Justice at 646-602-5600, Lambda Legal at 212.809.8585, or New York Legal Aid Group at 212-613-5000.
- If you have questions about the transition visit www.transbucket.com.
- For help to transgender immigrant women visit the Intercultural Collective TRANSgrediendo.
Visit nyc.gov and look for “Transgender Health” for up-to-date information on trans-friendly medical services, support services
and support groups in New York City.