Doctors on Riccarton is dedicated to being an inclusive and accepting general practice and workplace that embraces, supports and celebrates the diversity of sexual and gender identities.
Gender Affirmation and Transition Support
Our sexual and gender identity determines who we are as people. Some of us – especially younger people – can find it hard figuring out how we identify.
Doctors on Riccarton is committed to supporting our enrolled rainbow patients with their particular health needs. Please make an appointment to talk to one of our doctors, nurses, health improvement practitioners or health coaches who will be happy to discuss any health issues you may have.
Gender Categories and Titles
When you enrol with us, please indicate on the enrolment form what your gender identity is. If this information was not provided to us initially, you can always change your gender recorded in our patient management system (Indici) later. Please send us a message through the patient portal (Myindici) if you would like to have this changed. Or you can ring our friendly receptionists to have it changed. Currently, categories available in the Indici system are “female”, “indeterminate”, “male” , “non-binary”, “other gender”, “unknown” and “unspecified or unknown”.
Please also kindly let us know if you have any changes to your preferred names and/or legal names so we can update them in the system.
Doctors on Riccarton is committed to valuing and validating the gender identity and expression of our patients. We encourage our patients to indicate the pronouns they use for themselves. Please let us know what pronouns you use. We will have this recorded in your notes. Please feel free to correct us and provide feedback, so we can use them correctly with your support too.
All our toilets are gender-neutral. These toilets are open for anyone to use.
The LGBTQIA+ population may face many social, economic, and emotional barriers that discourage them from seeking healthcare services. We provide a safe, non-judgmental environment that encourages open and honest communication at every stage of care.
Speaking to your healthcare providers about your sexual identity and sexual behaviors is the first step to ensuring we can help you get the healthcare that you need and deserve. Feeling comfortable and confident about our sexual and gender identity is crucial to good health and wellbeing.
LGBTQIA+ people have both general health needs and specific needs that relate to their identity (e.g. hormone therapy and gender affirming surgery). Certain lifestyle-related risk factors may also be more common within parts of the LGBTQIA+ community. For example, studies have found higher rates of obesity and lower rates of pregnancy in lesbian and bisexual women than in heterosexual women, which means the risk for breast and certain gynecological cancers is increased in these groups. The use of hormone therapy during a gender transition can also increase the risk for breast cancer in transgender women. Additionally, transgender women and men may also be at increased risk for cardiovascular diseases including strokes and blood clots due to side effects of hormone medications such as estrogen and testosterone.
Regular health screening and prevention measures are recommended for all LGBTQ+ patients. This may include, but is not limited to:
- STI screenings
- Medication and hormone treatment monitoring
- Gynecological and anal exams
- Prostate, testicular, and colon cancer screenings
- Mental health screening
- Blood pressure and heart rate screening
- Height and weight checks for body mass index
- Exercise and diet counselling
- Blood tests for cholesterol, triglyceride, and glucose levels
Everyone’s screening and health needs are different. We strongly recommend you discuss with your doctors and nurses about what are the most appropriate and necessary tests for you.
Resources and Support Services for Rainbow/LGBTQIA+/Takatapui:
Some resources are available to explore issues around gender and sexual identity as well as support services.
- 0800 OUTLINE is a free phone line where all counsellors are from the rainbow community, and also provides some face to face counselling. You can also visit their website for more information.
- Takatapui is a resource hub for takatāpui and whānau
- Gender Minorities Aotearoa provides resources for trans and gender diverse people, friends and whānau in Aotearoa
- Be-there is a Site with resources for parents/whānau with rainbow rangatahi
- Q-topia is a social support group for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, intersex, takataapui, fa’afafine and all queer or questioning youth in the Canterbury region aged 14 – 25.
- InsideOUT and RainbowYOUTH work with New Zealand’s queer and gender diverse youth to provide a safe and supportive environment.
- Rainbow Networking Canterbury is about connecting businesses, professionals and individuals of the Christchurch LGBTQIA+ community – it has monthly gatherings
- Rainbow NZ Charitable Trust offers tertiary scholarships and other support for the community
- You can download the Gay and Lesbian Youth Support pamphlet from the Community and Public Health website.