Reproductive Health

Gender Care

This page is meant to provide information and resources for gender affirming care so you can take steps to be in control of your health. Because there is a wide range of gender identities and experiences, not all of the topics presented below may be relevant for you. 

What gender care services are available at Brown?

Brown Health Services offers gender affirming care to students across the gender spectrum. Our services are based on the standards of care developed by the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH). 

Gender affirming care is an essential primary care service. Health Services uses an informed consent model to initiate or continue hormone therapy. 

Gender Affirming Care Provided

  • Primary and urgent care
  • Hormone therapy
  • Gender-affirming gynecological and sexual health care, including cervical cancer screening/pelvic exams and breast/chest exams as needed based 
  • Pharmacy for hormones, needles, syringes, etc.
  • Sharps containers
  • Injection teaching with RN
  • Letters and referrals for gender affirming surgery, vocal therapy, etc.
  • Letters to document name change and gender marker (e.g., passports, drivers licenses, etc.)
  • Lab
  • Counseling services 

Health Services is located at 450 Brook Street. Brown student can call 401.863-3953 to make an appointment. 

What can I expect at my first gender care visit?

Your visit will be scheduled for 40 minutes, and will primarily focus on your provider getting to know you, your gender experience, and your gender affirmation goals while also ensuring that gender affirming care is medically safe for you by reviewing your personal and family medical history. Your provider may perform a physical exam and order baseline laboratory work. If you choose to take hormones, your provider will review the reversible and irreversible effects of hormone therapy and any side effects or risks to you. 

If you choose to take hormones, you will have regular follow up appointments with your medical provider. You should also expect to have laboratory monitoring to ensure that your hormone treatment is safe. 

Is my visit to Health Services confidential?

Yes. All visits to Health Services are confidential. In addition, the staff at Health Services is accustomed to working with students who are concerned about confidentiality issues related to insurance billing (this is a common concern for students who are on their parents' insurance plans) and we can work with you to negotiate this issue as well.

Visits to Health Services providers are covered by the Health Services fee paid by all students. There is no office visit charge. Lab charges and prescriptions are not covered by the fee. These charges can be billed to insurance or paid for out of pocket. Individual insurance coverage will vary, but Health Services will help you understand the insurance billing process. 

What does my insurance cover?

The student health insurance plan covers hormone therapy, mental health care, and medically necessary gender affirming surgery. Learn more here: https://www.brown.edu/about/administration/insurance/student-insurances/...

Private health insurance plans may vary in their coverage of gender affirming care. Each plan is different, and students will need to work directly with their insurer to determine specific coverage. 
 

Can I change my name in the Brown system?

Students may change their first name at Brown University without changing their name legally. This is called a “lived name” and will change the name in the Brown computer system, email, and ID Card. Learn more here: https://www.brown.edu/campus-life/support/lgbtq/transbrown/name-email-an...

You can change your preferred name in the medical records system for Health Services, Counseling and Psychological Services, and BWell during self-check in.

 

What supports does Brown offer for safety and wellness?

Brown is dedicated to providing an environment that creates safety and wellness for trans students. The LGBTQ Center can offer support for gender exploration and during social or physical transition. The Office of Residential Life works to provide housing accommodations that best meet the needs of trans students. Both Health Services and Counseling and Psychological Services strive to provide trans-sensitive care to students. They will also assist you in finding additional medical professionals who can help you obtain the emotional and physical care specific to your needs. 

Even with these support services, you may still find that you frequently face obstacles and you may also worry about and experience discrimination and violence. Experiences with others' transphobia can sometimes lead to mental health concerns, such as depression, anxiety and risk of suicide. Because of all these concerns, this page will offer you links to resources that can offer you support and care and information to help you navigate your time at Brown.

How can I support my trans friend or family member?

Here are a few things that you can do to show support for the trans person in your life:

  • Learn more about what trans means. Read books and websites by or about trans people. Attend workshop or conferences on LGBTQ issues.

  • Talk to the trans person in your life. Find out what name and pronoun they prefer and ask how they would like you to support them.

  • Take time to think about what you know about trans people, what your assumptions are, what things might be hard for you, and what questions you may have.

  • Get support for yourself, such as individual or group counseling and attend support groups.

  • Speak out against anti-trans behavior. Let people know you don't want to hear offensive slang, stereotypical remarks, or put downs about trans people. Share your knowledge and experiences with those around you.

There are many resources, both locally and nationally, that offer support services for friends and family members of trans people. Parents, Families & Friends of Lesbians & Gays (PFLAG) promotes the health and well-being of gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans persons, and their families and friends through support, education, and advocacy, to end discrimination and to secure equal civil rights. On campus you can contact the LGBTQ Center (401.863-3062), Health Promotion (863-2794), and Counseling and Psychological Services (863-3476). The Queer Alliance (a student group) is another important on-campus resource. 

On-Campus Resources

Brown LGBTQ Center 401.863-6062          
The LGBTQ Center is a safe space for all students, staff, and faculty dealing with questions of sexual orientation and gender identity. The Center offers confidential support, information, and referrals for LGBTQ individuals and the people in their lives. Additionally, it offers fellowship advising and assistance with academic projects, as well as educational workshops.

BWell Health Promotion 401.863-2794
Health Promotion is available for individual appointments and group education on a variety of health issues, including LGBTQ health, alcohol, other drugs, nutrition and safer sex. We have condoms, lube, and dental dams available at no charge. We are located at 450 Brook Street.

Health Services 401.863-3593  
Health Services provides a range of services including general health care, STI testing, and emergency medical care. You can request a specific medical provider by name or by gender. We are located at 450 Brook Street. Brown students can call 401.863-3953 to make an appointment.

Counseling and Psychological Services 401.863-3476
Counseling and Psychological Services provides assessment, brief psychotherapy, and crisis intervention for Brown students.

Chaplain's Office 401.863-2344 
The Chaplains are available for personal counseling about religious and social issues, parental and peer difficulties, career choices, interpersonal relationships and sexuality. A number of programs are offered during the year that include ecumenical discussion groups, innovative worship experience, ecumenical services, and dramatic and artistic events.

Queer Alliance 
The Queer Alliance serves as an umbrella organization for a number of groups on campus. Its mission is to be a multifaceted service to the LGBT community by offering resources through subgroups, community discussions, and events. The LGBTQ Resource Center (Faunce House, Room 321) has a wide array of queer-related books, movies, literature and resources. You can e-mail [email protected] for more information or to get involved.

Related Links

Transgender Health Information Program
Information on hormones, surgery, and voice changes plus guides for trans patients on health issues including body image and weight, cancer, vaccinations, diabetes, osteoperosis, and cardiovascular disease. This site also has clinical protocols for trans health care.

Youth Pride, Inc. 401.421-5626
Youth Pride, Inc. (YPI) is Rhode Island’s only statewide nonprofit organization with programming dedicated to meeting the social, emotional, and educational needs of youth and young adults impacted by sexual orientation and gender identity. The drop-in center offers support services, social activities, and outreach opportunities for youth ages 13-23.

TGI Network of RI
TGI Network of Rhode Island is a statewide organization serving the needs of the transgender, gender-variant, and intersex (TGI) communities in Rhode Island and surrounding areas through support, advocacy, and education.

Trans Student Educational Resources 
Trans Student Educational Resources is a youth-led organization dedicated to transforming the educational environment for trans and gender nonconforming students through advocacy and empowerment. In addition to a focus on creating a more trans-friendly education system, their mission is to educate the public and teach trans activists how to be effective organizers. 

The GLBT Health Access Project
Offers resources, materials, and trainings designed to improve the quality of health care provided to LGBTQ people.

PFLAG Parents and Friends of Lesbian and Gays 
PFLAG promotes the health and well-being of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender persons, their families and friends through support, education, and advocacy.

Advocates for Youth 
Advocates for Youth has developed programs to help decrease the isolation felt by many LGBTQ youth. It offers a variety of research based approaches, designed to decrease health disparities in LGBTQ communities, which can be used by both LGBTQ community members and allies.

FTM International 
FTM International provides information about female to male transgendered people, through their newsletter and other publications, through support from volunteers who are willing to help if you need someone to talk to, or through our list of online mailing lists and links, and also through their monthly meetings, calendar and special events.

The National Coalition for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Health 
The National Coalition for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Health is committed to improving the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals and communities through public education, coalition building and advocacy that focuses on research, policy, education and training.

Fenway Community Health  
Fenway Community Health is a Boston based clinic that serves LGBTQ patients. Their webpage offers a variety of health information needs, as well as research and resources outside of FCH.

CDC Transgender Health Page
A variety of information on important health issues, including safer sex and STI information.

PHONE NUMBERS
  • 401.863-2794
    Health Promotion
  • 401.863-3953
    Health Services
  • 401.863-6000
    Sexual Assault Response Line
  • 401.863-4111
    EMS
  • 401.863-3476
    Counseling & Psychological Services
  • 401.863-4111
    DPS