The Fenway Institute conducts policy research on issues affecting LGBT health, HIV policy, hepatitis, sexually transmitted infections, tuberculosis, and other issues. We also address the social determinants of health, which the World Health Organization defines as “the circumstances in which people are born, grow up, live, work, and age, as well as the systems put in place to deal with illness.”
We conduct research on issues affecting LGBT youth and LGBT elders, and on policies affecting LGBT people involved with the corrections system. Health policy research is disseminated to policy makers, health care and service providers, advocates, researchers and others through a variety of means, including:
Public comment on the Food and Drug Administration’s proposed rule on Manufacturer Communications Regarding Unapproved Uses of Approved or Cleared Medical Products; Public Hearing; Request for Comments, January 9, 2017. (PDF)
Public comment on the Food and Drug Administration’s Blood Donor Deferral Policy for Reducing the Risk of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Transmission by Blood and Blood Products; Establishment of a Public Docket; Request for Comments, November 25, 2016 (PDF)
Public comment on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Community Living’s Request for New Information Collection for a Program Instruction on Guidance for the Development and Submission of State Plans on Aging, State Plan Amendments and Intrastate Funding Formula, August 8, 2016 (PDF)
Public comment to the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology on Notice of Proposed Rule Making, the Voluntary 2015 Edition Electronic Health Record Certification Criteria; Interoperability Updates and Regulatory Improvements, including 2017 Certified EHR Technology (CEHRT) proposals, April 28, 2014 (PDF).
Testimony of Fenway Health to the Joint Committee on Financial Services of the Massachusetts Legislature in support of H986, an Act relative to HIV-associated lipodystrophy treatment, March 5, 2014 (PDF).
Community public comment, led by The Fenway Institute and the Center for American Progress, on Stage 3 proposed Meaningful Use Guidelines submitted to Office of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology and Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services; submitted January 14, 2013 (PDF).
Fenway Health comments on Stage 3 proposed Meaningful Use Guidelines submitted to Office of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology and Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, December 19, 2012 (PDF).
Fenway Health comments on Stage 2 proposed Meaningful Use Guidelines submitted to Office of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology and Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, May 7, 2012 (PDF).
Fenway Health comments to Food and Drug Administration in support of indicating emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (FTC-TDF) for pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV prevention, April 17, 2012 (PDF).
Massachusetts Commission on LGBTQ Youth Annual Policy Recommendations FY16 (PDF)
Wang T, Cahill S. (2016, September 23). ACA rule should improve access to health care for transgender people. The Hill.
Cahill S. (2016, September 16). Aging with HIV/AIDS: The progress made, and the challenges that remain. WBUR Cognoscenti blog.
Cahill S (2016, June 17). Orlando and the broader context of anti-LGBT backlash. The Hill.
Cahill S (2016, April 12). Health Care Reform Is Saving Lives. Huffington Post.
Cahill S (2016, March 17). Cherishing all the children of the nation equally: My gay Irish American journey. Huffington Post.
Cahill S (2016, February 18). New HIV diagnoses have declined, but not for Black gay and bisexual men. Health Affairs Blog.
Wang T, Cahill S (2016, January 7). Anti-transgender bills threaten people’s ability to fully participate in society. The Hill.
Cahill S, Makadon H (2015, November 6). A game-changer for LGBT health. The Boston Globe.
Mermin J, Cahill S (2015, September 18). HIV and aging. AIDS.gov.
Cahill S, Mayer K (2015, August 19). Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program a huge success—let’s build on it. The Hill.
Cahill S (2015, July 24). What we’re looking for over the next five years of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy. Huffington Post.
Cahill S, Mayer K (2014, September-October). Wider PrEP use could reduce HIV infections. The Gay and Lesbian Review/Worldwide.
Cahill S (2014). Are you being served—medically? The Advocate.
Cahill S., Reisner S. (2014). Social justice can cure what ails us; Being discriminated against is bad for your health, according to new findings. The Advocate.
Cahill S., Bradford J., Makadon H. (2014). New CDC data on lesbian, gay and bisexual health demonstrate resiliency, disparities.Huffington Post.
Cahill S., Mayer K. (2014). New CDC PrEP guidelines could transform HIV prevention. Huffington Post.
Cahill S. (2014). Steps healthcare providers can take to provide affirming care to transgender elders. Aging Today; The bimonthly newspaper of the American Society on Aging. May-June 2014. Volume xxxv Number 3. 11.
Cahill S. (2014). Kathleen Sebelius’s LGBT Legacy. Huffington Post.
Mayer K., Cahill S., Safren S., Mimiaga M., Makadon H. (2013, December 28). Repeal Section 377. The Hindu.
Cahill S. and Makadon H. (2013, September). The Affordable Care Act: Real benefits for LGBT people. Huffington Post.
Cahill, S., Makadon, H., Baker, K., and Keatley, J. (2013, January). End LGBT invisibility in health care now! Do ask, do tell. Huffington Post.
Cahill, S. (2012, July). Caution and optimism; AIDS 2012 highlights challenges, but also successes to guide us forward. MetroWeekly
Cahill, S. (2012, July). Homophobia hinders AIDS fight. Politico.com
Cahill, S. (2012, July). A new turning point in the fight against HIV/AIDS. Huffington Post
Cahill, S. (2012, June). The Supreme Court’s ruling upholding the ACA is especially important for LGBT people and those living with HIV/AIDS. Huffington Post
Cahill, S., and Cianciotto, J. (2012, June). Let’s make it better now for LGBT youth. Boston.com (The Boston Globe online)
Cahill, S. (2012, May). A potential game changer in the fight against HIV/AIDS. Huffington Post
Cahill, S. (2012, March). A game changer in the fight against HIV.Boston.com (The Boston Globe online)
Bradford J, Putney J, Shepard B, Sass S, Rudicel S, Ladd H, Cahill S (2016, April). Healthy aging in community for older lesbians. LGBT Health. DOI: 10.1089/LGBT.2015.0019.
Burkhalter JE, Margolies L, Sigurdsson HO, Walland J, Radix A, Rice D, Buchting FO, Sanchez NF, Bare MG, Boehmer U, Cahill S, Griebling TL, Bruessow D, Maingi S (2016, February). The National LGBT Cancer Action Plan: A white paper of the 2014 National Summit on Cancer in the LGBT Communities. LGBT Health. 3(1); 19-31.
Cahill S, Baker K, Deutsch M, Keatley J, Makadon H. (2015, December 28 published online). Inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity in Stage 3 Meaningful Use guidelines a huge step forward for LGBT health. LGBT Health.
Reisner SL, White Hughto JM, Dunham E, Heflin K, Begenyi JB, Coffey-Esquivel J, Cahill S (2015, July). Legal protections in public accommodations settings: A critical public health issue for transgender and gender nonconforming people. Milbank Quarterly. 1-32.
Cahill S, Mayer K, & Boswell S (2015, June). The Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program in the age of health care reform. American Journal of Public Health. 105(6): 1078-1085.
Cahill S & Vargas H (2015, April). Policy and legal issues affecting LGBT health. Makadon H, Mayer K, Potter J, Goldhammer H (eds.). The Fenway Guide to LGBT Health. Philadelphia: American College of Physicians. Second edition. 519-538.
Porter K & Cahill S (2014, September 24). A state-level review of diversity initiatives in congregate meal programs established under the Older Americans Act. Research on Aging. DOI: 10.1177/0164027514552330.
Cahill, S., Singal, R., Grasso, C., King, D., Mayer, K., Baker, K., and Makadon, H. (2014). Do Ask, Do Tell: High Levels of Acceptability by Patients of Routine Collection of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Data in Four Diverse American Community Health Centers. PLOS One.
Cahill, S. Community Resources and Government Services for LGBT Older Adults and Their Families. Orel, N., Fruhauf, C. (eds.). The Lives of LGBT Older Adults: Understanding Challenges and Resilience. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 2014. 141-170.
Cahill, S. & Makadon, H. (2014). Sexual orientation and gender identity collection update: U.S. Government takes steps to promote sexual orientation and gender identity collection through meaningful use guidelines. LGBT Health. 1(3). 1-4.
Mantell, J., Sandfort, T., Hoffman, S., Guidry, J., Masvawure, T., and Cahill, S. Knowledge and attitudes about preexposure prophylaxis among sexually active men who have sex with men and who participate in New York City Gay Pride events. LGBT Health. 1(2). Published online ahead of print February 2014. doi:10.1089/lgbt.2013.0047.
Cahill, S., Schaefer, N., & Valadez, R. (2013). Promoting HIV Prevention and Research with Men who have Sex with Men (MSM) through U.S. Foreign Policy. Global HIV/AIDS Politics, Policy, and Activism: Persistent Challenges and Emerging Issues. Volume 2: Policy and Policymaking. (Raymond Smith, editor.) Westport, Connecticut: Praeger. 69-86 (PDF).
Cahill, S., & Makadon, H. (2013, September). Sexual orientation and gender identity data collection in clinical settings and in Electronic Health Records: A key to ending LGBT health disparities. LGBT Health. 1(1). 1-8.
Brennan, M., Seidel, L., London, A., Cahill, S., & Karpiak, S. (2013). Service Utilization among Older Adults with HIV: The Joint Association of Sexual Identity and Gender. Journal of Homosexuality
Cahill, S., & Valadez, R. (2013, January 17 published online ahead of print). Growing Older with HIV/AIDS: New Public Health Challenges.American Journal of Public Health. E1-e10. Doi:10.2105/AJPH.2012.301161.
Cahill, S., Valadez, R. & Ibarrola S. (2012, November 15, advance published online). Community-based HIV Prevention Interventions That Combat Antigay Stigma for Men who have Sex with Men (MSM) and Transgender Women. Journal of Public Health Policy (OVERVIEW).
Burkhalter, J., Cahill, S., Shuk, E., Guidry, J., Corner, G., Berk, A., Candelario, N., Kornegay, M. and Lubetkin, E. (October 4, 2012). At the Intersection of HIV/AIDS and Cancer: A Qualitative Needs Assessment of Community-Based HIV/AIDS Service Organizations.Health Education and Behavior. (NCBI)
Cahill, S., Schaefer, N., & Valadez, R. (in press). Promoting HIV Prevention and Research with Men who have Sex with Men (MSM) through U.S. Foreign Policy. Global HIV/AIDS Politics, Policy, and Activism: Persistent Challenges and Emerging Issues. (Raymond Smith, editor). Westport, Connecticut: Praeger.
Cianciotto, J., & Cahill, S. (2012, May). LGBT Youth in America’s Schools. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press .
Cahill, S. & Valadez, R., (2012, Spring). Community-Based Approaches to HIV Prevention that Address Anti-Gay Stigma.Psychology & AIDS Exchange.
U.S. Conference on AIDS. National Minority AIDS Council. “HIV/AIDS service organizations growing to provide medical care in the South.” Organizer and Moderator. “Collection and use of data to improve HIV outcomes among women.” Panelist. Hollywood, Florida. September 2016.
National Ryan White Conference on HIV Care and Treatment. “Transgender women, feminizing hormones, and PrEP: What we know and what we need to know.” Presenter and organizer. “Incarceration, sexual victimization, reintegration, and the HIV care continuum.” Presenter and organizer. “National Center for Innovation in HIV Care.” Presenter at meeting between HRSA HIV/AIDS Bureau leadership and national cooperative agreements. August 2016.
American Statistical Association, Joint Statistical Meeting. “Expanding capacity for the measurement of sexual orientation and gender identity in federal surveys.” Discussant. Chicago. August 2016.
Massachusetts General Hospital. “Health policy research.” Presentation to psychiatry interns. Boston. July 2016.
AIDS 2016, International AIDS Conference. “Competent and affirming health care for gay and bisexual men/MSM and transgender women as a broader context for HIV care and prevention.” Chair and organizer. “Strategies to improve the health of older adults living with HIV.” Presenter. “U.S. Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program’s support for comprehensive enabling services, integrated care helps PLWH remain in care, achieve viral suppression.” Poster presentation. Coauthored with Kenneth Mayer, M.D. and Stephen Boswell, M.D. Durban, South Africa. July 2016.
Academy Health. “Identifying best practices for asking about sexual orientation and gender identity with Medicare beneficiaries.” Coauthors Chris Haffer, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Office of Minority Health, and Tim Wang, Fenway Institute. Boston. June 2016.
VITAL Conference, America’s Essential Hospitals. “Collecting and using sexual orientation, gender identity data in EHRs.” Critical conversation with Leandro Mena, M.D., University of Mississippi Medical Center, and Kellan Baker, MPH, Center for American Progress. Boston. June 2016.
Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs. “Collecting sexual orientation, gender identity data from older adults to improve services.” Webinar with Family Caregiver Support staff from across Massachusetts. Co-presented with Bob Linscott, Assistant Director, LGBT Aging Project. Boston. June 2016.
Northeastern University School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs. “Federal and state policy changes to advance LGBT health equity.” Boston. April 2016.
Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs. “Collecting sexual orientation, gender identity data from older adults to improve services.” Webinar with Aging Service Access Point (ASAP) staff from across Massachusetts. Co-presented with Bob Linscott, Assistant Director, LGBT Aging Project. Boston. April 2016.
Bi-State Primary Care Association, Vermont and New Hampshire. “Do Ask, Do Tell! Collecting Data on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in Health Centers.” April 2016.
Kraft Family National Center for Leadership and Training in Community Health, Class of 2016 and Class of 2017 Joint Learning Day. “Research, policy analysis, and education to improve HIV prevention and care.” Panel with Alex Gonzalez, M.D., Medical Director of Fenway Health, and Lori Panther, M.D., Associate Medical Director for Clinical Research, Fenway Institute, Boston. April 2016.
Boston College School of Social Work. “The Massachusetts Special Legislative Committee on LGBT Aging: Improving Services.” April 2016.
National Association of State and Territorial AIDS Directors 2016 Eastern Regional Meeting. “Collecting sexual orientation and gender identity data in Electronic Health Records.” Boston. April 2016.
Salem State University. LGBT Elders in an Ever Changing World. “The Special Legislative Commission on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Aging Report: Implementing Policy Change and Service Improvement in Massachusetts.” With Dale Mitchell, Ethos, Member of Mass. LGBT Aging Commission. Salem, Massachusetts. March 2016.
Harvard University LGBTQ Conference. Beyond Marriage. Panel: “LGBTQ Health: Destructive Disparities.” March 2016.
National Center for Innovation in HIV Care webinar. “National HIV/AIDS Strategy 2020 and the Federal Action Plan: Implications for ASOs, CBOs, and Community Health Centers.” December 2015.
Public Responsibility in Medicine and Research Advancing Ethical Research Conference. “Research with and about LGBT people.” Panel with John Guidry, Gay Men’s Health Crisis. Boston. November 2015.
National Association of Community Health Centers. Financial Operations Management/Information Management Conference. “Collecting social determinants of health data to reduce disparities and improve outcomes.” Panel with Rosy Chang Weir (Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations) and Chris Grasso (Fenway Institute). Las Vegas. November 2015.
Harvard University, Harvard Gender and Sexuality Caucus, Harvard Alumni Association. What Should We Do After “I Do”? “Minding our elders: The greying of the LGBTQ community.” Organizer and moderator. September 2015.
Office of Minority Health Resource Center. Higher Education Technical Assistance Project Regional Training. “Our Health Matters: Reducing health disparities with Boston LGBTQ youth of color.” Session 8: Women, Youth, and Community Partnerships. Simmons College, Boston. August 2015.
Forum for Collaborative HIV Research. National Summit on HCV and HIV Diagnosis, Prevention and Access to Care. “The Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program in the age of health care reform.” Arlington, VA. June 2015.
LGBT Health Workforce Conference. Hunter College, CUNY Center for LGBTQ Studies. “Recent federal policy developments re: SO/GI data collection in EHRs, clinical settings.” Plenary panel. May 2015.
New York University. “NYU professors talk LGBTQ health.” Panel discussion. NYU LGBTQ Student Center, College of Nursing, Global Public Health Action Network. April 2015.
Harvard School of Public Health. “Health resilience and risk in a sample of House and Ball community members.” Women, Gender, and Health Interdisciplinary Concentration. Trans-disciplinary Series on Justice and Health. With Sarah Trieweiler, Fenway Institute Research Intern. April 2015.
LGBT Elders in an Ever-Changing World Conference. “The Massachusetts LGBT Aging Commission: Supporting resiliency through policy change and service improvement.” Salem State University School of Social Work, Salem, Massachusetts. With Janson Wu, Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders. March 2015.
LGBT Primary Care Alliance Strategic Meeting. National Association of Community Health Centers Policy and Issues Forum. “Collecting sexual orientation and gender identity data in the Electronic Health Record: Why and how.” With Harvey Makadon, M.D., Fenway Institute, Washington, DC. March 2015.
American Public Health Association. “Legal protections in public accommodations settings: A critical public health issue for transgender adults in Massachusetts.” Reisner SL, White JM, Dunham E, Begenyi J, Heflin K, Cahill S. Oral Presentation. Abstract 302972. New Orleans. November 2014.
Summer Institute in LGBT Population Health Research. The Fenway Institute and Northeastern University. “Sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) data collection in clinical records, Electronic Health Records, and Meaningful Use guidelines.” Boston. August 2014.
International AIDS Conference. “Promoting HIV Prevention and Research with Men who have Sex with Men (MSM) Through U.S. Foreign Policy.” Valadez R, Cahill S. Poster presentation. Melbourne, Australia. July 2014.
California Institute for Integral Studies. Expanding the Circle: Creating an Inclusive Environment for LGBTQ Students and Studies in Higher Education. Keynote. “LGBT policy issues and higher education.” Also taught weekend-long course in LGBT policy. San Francisco. June 2014.
Salem State University School of Social Work. LGBT Elders in an Ever-Changing World conference. “LGBT older adults: Demographics and key policy issues.” Salem, Massachusetts. May 2014.
Massachusetts LGBT Aging Commission. “LGBT older adults: Demographics and key frames for understanding policy issues.” Boston. April 2014.
Hampshire College. Civil Liberties and Public Policy conference. From abortion rights to social justice: Building the movement for reproductive freedom. “LGBT health disparities.” Amherst, Massachusetts. April 2014.
Forum for Collaborative HIV Research. University of California, Berkeley. Use of Generic ARVs for Treatment of HIV in the United States. Panelist, Session on Financing, Payments and Reimbursement Considerations in HIV Care. Washington, DC. March 2014.
Harvard University Graduate School of Education. “LGBT youth of color: Disparities and resilience.” Presentation on NIMHD-funded community-based research project in Boston. March 2014.
Tufts University Experimental College. “Policy issues affecting transgender people in the U.S., globally.” Medford, Massachusetts. February 2014.
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Creating Change conference. Pre-conference Institute on the Affordable Care Act and LGBT Health. Co-organized with the Center for American Progress. January 2014. Houston, Texas.
Gerontological Society of America. Presenter of “Health policy and elder policy benefits of LGBT-specific congregate meal programs.” Moderator and co-organizer of symposium, “Congregate meal programs: A potential resiliency factor for LGBT older adults.” New Orleans, Louisiana. November 2013.
New England Alliance on Gay and Bisexual Men’s Health. “Gay and bisexual men and the Affordable Care Act.” Ogunquit, Maine. October 2013.
Gay and Lesbian Medical Association Annual Meeting, Denver. “LGBT elder health care and policy issues.” September 2013
Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality Annual Symposium, San Francisco. “The public policy significance of data collection on sexual orientation and gender identity.” August 2013
California Institute for Integral Studies. Launch of PhD Program in Human Sexuality. “A dam burst of dreams on LGBT policy.” August 2013
Summer Institute, Center for Population Research in LGBT Health, The Fenway Institute and Boston University School of Public Health. “LGBT health policy and HIV policy in the context of health care reform.”AIDS Care Ocean State, Pathways to Healthy Housing conference. Providence, Rhode Island, March 2013. “HIV and aging.”
Salem State University, Salem, MA. LGBT elders in an ever changing world conference (Salem State University School of Social Work, North Shore Elder Services, LGBT Aging Project), March 2013. “Policy issues affecting LGBT elders.”
Boston HIV Planning Council, Consumer Committee, Boston, MA. January 2013. “HIV and aging.”
Forum for Collaborative HIV Research, 2012 National Summit on HIV and Viral Hepatitis Diagnosis, Prevention, and Access to Care, November 26-28, 2012. Poster session, “How to implement PrEP.” Oral session, “Pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV prevention,” Prevention Models category.
American Public Health Association, San Francisco, CA, October 28-31, 2012. Oral presentations: “Collecting data on sexual orientation in clinical settings,” “Overcoming concerns and barriers to implementing pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV prevention.”
Harvard University Graduate School of Education. “LGBT youth in America’s schools.” October 4, 2012.
Harvard University Kennedy School of Government. Carr Center for Human Rights Policy. Sexuality, Gender and Human Rights Program. “LGBT youth and health disparities.” September 21, 2012.
Summer Institute in LGBT Population Health, Center for Population Research in LGBT Health, The Fenway Institute, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, “LGBT youth in America’s schools.” August 1, 2012.
International AIDS Conference, Washington, DC. Organizer and moderator, satellite session, “Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV prevention: Maximizing success.” Co-author, poster session, “Knowledge of and attitudes toward PrEP in a New York City sample of sexually active MSM.” July 20-27, 2012.
Young Elected Officials Network, Washington, DC. Plenary panel (with HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius). “Building a healthy society: The state of health care in America.” June 22, 2012.
Boston University School of Public Health. “Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender health policy and HIV policy in the context of health care reform.” Presentation to faculty and graduate students. May 8, 2012.
National Primary Care Conference on Aging. “Aging in LGBT communities: Improving services and eliminating barriers to care.” April 30, 2012.
HealthHIV SYNChronicity, Arlington, VA. “PrEP: Moving toward implementation.” April 21, 2012.
National Health Promotion Summit, Washington, DC. “Gathering sexual orientation and gender identity data in clinical settings.” April 10, 2012.
American Society on Aging. “LGBT elder and HIV elder policy issues.” Washington, DC. March 29, 2012.
National Association of Community Health Centers, Policy and Issues Forum. “Meeting the health care needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people: Issues in education and health policy.” (S. Cahill, H. Makadon, H. Goldhammer, R. Vanderwarker.) Washington, DC. March 23, 2012.
Salem State University, LGBT elders in a changing world. “LGBT elder policy issues.” Salem, Massachusetts. March 17, 2012.
Root Cause Social Issues Forum, the Boston Foundation. “LGBT elder and HIV elder policy issues.” Boston, Massachusetts. March 16, 2012.
Wagner School of Public Policy, New York University. “Getting to zero new infections: World AIDS Day reflections on HIV policy in the U.S. and globally.” Organizer and moderator. Sponsored by the Stonewall Policy Alliance, LGBT students at Wagner School. December 8, 2012.
Gerontological Society of America. “Growing older with the epidemic: HIV and aging policy” (S. Cahill, N. Schaefer). “Multimorbidities and ADL difficulty predict use of community-based services among older adults with HIV.” (M. Brennan, L. Seidel, S. Karpiak, J. Guidry, S. Cahill, N. Candelario, A. London). Boston. November 19, 2011.
New York University LGBTQ Student Center. “LGBT health care policy in the Obama-Biden Administration.” November 7, 2011.
New England Association of HIV Over 50, National Conference on HIV/AIDS and Aging. Panelist. Kennedy Library, Boston. September 23, 2011.
Questions & Inquiries
1340 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02215
Sean Cahill, PhD
Director, Health Policy Research
Tim Wang, MPH
LGBT Health Policy Analyst