What started out as a simple desire by Oneonta's Dr. Carolyn Wolf-Gould, to better serve a population of people who are very underserved, those who are transgender, has turned into a model and nationally-known healthcare practice where transgender patients can receive the specialized care they need in a welcoming environment. Unfortunately at this time, this is still a highly unusual thing, but Dr. Wolf-Gould hopes to change that with a chapter she wrote for a newly published resource book called “From Margins to Mainstream: Creating a Rural-Based Center of Excellence in Transgender Health for Upstate, New York” which details the challenges that transgender patients and their medical providers face in rural areas.

Dr. Carolyn Wolf-Gould (credit: Bassett Healthcare Network)

According to a release from Bassett Healthcare Network, the book is available for free as a download with the intent of reaching as many healthcare providers as possible. The book is a resource for healthcare providers with Dr. Wolf-Gould's chapter in the book talking about her insights on working with transgender patients after years of experience. Dr. Wolf-Gould was able to create the Gender Wellness Center by working with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Clinical Scholars Program.

Dr. Wolf-Gould describes the barriers in transgender health to be a "wicked problem" and goes on to say, “the transgender and gender-nonconforming community is chronically underserved by our health system. Caring for them demands more—creating institutions, like the Gender Wellness Center, that help them find the services they need. And also changing the culture and climate of the entire system to include their needs. My hope is that pieces like this might help in that big picture work.”

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Even though Wolf-Gould is proud of the accomplishments of her Gender Wellness Center team, she states that that issue of quality, transgender health care is a complex one and that there is a long way to go in terms of getting healthcare up to speed with the level of care needed is bringing gender-affirming healthcare to practices across the nation, especially in rural areas.

To learn more about Susquehanna Family Practice and Gender Wellness Center, located in the Foxcare Center on Route 7 in Oneonta, click here.

Healthcare Practitioners can download “From Margins to Mainstream: Creating a Rural-Based Center of Excellence in Transgender Health for Upstate, New York” for free at www.intechopen.com/books/8794.

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