To our Black trans and gender diverse patients, clients, participants, and community members . . .
We know we must do more to dismantle the systems of racism in our community, and in healthcare as a whole. Our spaces have not always been welcoming, and your voices have not always been heard. We stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement and those who are protesting against the violence and brutality perpetrated by white supremacy and systemic racism. As one of many steps towards supporting Black lives, and especially Black trans lives, we will be donating funds to a variety of organizations that provide safe spaces, leadership training and opportunities, and advocacy directly to Black trans communities. We will continue to facilitate conversations about intersectionality and racial justice, both within our organization and with our community, while continuing to listen and learn about where we need to do better.
To all of our patients – there are many ways to get involved. For folks participating in protests, we support you and want you to stay safe. Please wear a mask and gloves to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and to keep yourself and your community protected. We particularly encourage all of our white/non-POC community members to continue to listen, read, learn, and be open to difficult conversations in the coming weeks and months.
Finally, we remind ourselves of Audre Lorde’s righteous words from her work A Burst of Light: and Other Essays: “Caring for myself is not self-indulgence. It is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.” We hope that all of our patients are caring for themselves, but especially our Black community, our Black trans community, during this time when we need to raise your voices and experiences up the highest. If there is a way we can help you, or if you have any feedback about what we need to do, please let us know.
1) How long has Fenway had a Trans Health Program?
Download this interesting and informative booklet about the beginnings, history and growth of the Transgender Health Program at Fenway Health.
Martorelli, T. (Ed.). (2015). History of the Fenway Transgender Health Program. Boston, MA: Fenway Health.
2) Do I have to transfer my primary care to Fenway to get hormone treatment at Fenway?
Not necessarily. Fenway does not require patients to have their primary care at our health center sites in order to manage hormone treatments, however, your health insurance may require you to do so. Contact the member services phone number on the back of your insurance card if you have a question on whether you can receive specialty care at one primary health center if your primary care provider is located at another center. For people insured by MassHealth or Medicaid/Medicare, you will be required by those insurance plans to change your primary care to Fenway if you want any medical services here.
3) How do I find out if my insurance covers hormone treatment and/or surgery?
Insurance coverage and benefits are specific to the plan a person has and all insurance coverage is not the same even within the same insurance company (Blue Cross, Aetna, Tufts, etc.). In order to get information that is about your personal coverage benefits, you must call the member services phone number listed on your insurance card to ask about coverage for the specific services you need. You have a right to request a copy of your policy that covers any trans/gender affirmation medical treatments. You may want to bring the information you learn or the policy copy to your medical visit to talk about what it means for your access to care. If you have additional questions regarding insurance, or you do not have insurance at all, call and ask for an appointment with Financial Services at 617.927.6000.
4) How do I find a surgeon and how do I get a referral to get surgery once I find one?
There are many physicians who perform gender affirming surgeries. One place to search for some names of known gender affirmation surgeons is at transcaresite.org. Some people check online with others who are in surgery groups for trans and nonbinary people, such as transbucket.com where they can see photographs and talk with people who have worked with a particular surgeon. It is important to learn what you can about a potential surgeon before finalizing your choice when there is more than one option to choose from. Sometimes there may be only one option available. Be sure to ask about what insurance coverage a surgeon accepts for payment, if any, as you make a decision on who to pursue surgery with.
Fenway provides surgery assessments and assists with referrals for their primary care patients when surgery is the appropriate treatment needed. Before Fenway mental health and medical providers can write a referral letter for surgery, you must have a specific surgeon and a specific procedure that they are requesting for a patient. Fenway providers do not write referral letters addressed “To Whom It May Concern.” Contact your medical provider or care team to request a surgery assessment and assistance with the referral process.
5) How do I find a therapist?
Fenway Health has behavioral health services that provide episodic brief treatment and assessments for surgery referrals for trans and nonbinary patients of Fenway. It is best to call the Behavioral Health intake line at 617.927.6202 to ask what the current wait time is for starting treatment and whether the services available are the best fit for your needs. Fenway’s primary care patients may ask for an internal referral for surgery assessments by contacting their primary care provider’s care team or their provider. To find a therapist outside Fenway Health, there are a few places people may search online. One website is transcaresite.org. Another public site is psychologytoday.org that may be narrowed down using key terms such as “transgender” (listed under “issues” a provider works with). Also available is the NASW.org website and many health insurance carriers have lists of gender therapists if you call the member services phone number on the back of your card.
6) Can I start hormones before I leave for college?
If you are already a patient at Fenway Health and are 18 years of age or older, make an appointment to speak with your provider about hormone therapy. You can find more information on hormone treatments for adults by clicking on the “Adults and Hormones” PDF at the top of the page.
If you are already a patient at Fenway Health and are currently under the age of 18, your parent(s)/guardian(s) must consent to any hormone therapy. You can find more information on hormone treatments for individuals under 18 by clicking on the “Minors and Hormones” PDF at the top of the page.
If you are not a patient at Fenway Health and are 18 years of age or older, call our appointment line at 617.927.6000 and ask to schedule an appointment to discuss hormone therapy. You can find more information on hormone treatments for adults by clicking on the “Adults and Hormones” PDF at the top of the page.
If you are not a patient at Fenway Health and are under the age of 18, a parent/guardian must schedule an appointment for you by calling 617.927.6000. They need to ask for an appointment in the “Trans Youth Clinic.” One parent/guardian must attend this first appointment. You can find more information on hormone treatments for individuals under 18 by clicking on the “Minors and Hormones” PDF at the top of the page.
Fenway has no way to promise or insist that a college student health center provide or continue hormone treatments for a student. Please make sure to discuss with your provider, parent(s)/guardian(s) and school administration what you need and how your care will be continued when you start school.
7) How can I protect my healthcare information under the PATCH Act?
The Act to Protect Access to Confidential Healthcare (PATCH Act) went into effect on March 30, 2018 in Massachusetts. This law ensures that when multiple people are on the same insurance plan, confidential health care information is not shared with anyone other than the patient. This includes gender identity-related care for patients ages 18-26 who identify as transgender. [NOTE: Fenway Health requires consent of all legal guardians prior to gender-affirming medical treatment for anyone under the age of 18.]
In order to protect your information, follow the steps below.
1. Find your health insurance plan name and policy number. Both can be found on your health insurance card.
2. Call the customer service phone number on the back of your health insurance card or on your health insurance plan’s website.
3. Specify which health care service you are referring to, including the date of the service and the name of your health care provider, and say that you do not want the SOP form for that service to be sent.
4. Your health plan may want you make to make the request in writing and will give you instructions for how to do that.
Note: Your health insurance plan cannot ask why you do not want the SOP form to be sent.
Do you have other questions? Email and ask at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fenway offers several drop-in, staff-facilitated, peer-led, short-term, therapy and one-time social group activities and options for transgender and gender nonconforming (TGNC) people as well as for non-transgender partners, parents or guardians of TGNC individuals. A listing of these groups can be found here. Additional support and therapy groups at Fenway are available and welcoming of TGNC individuals. The full spectrum of available groups can be found here.
Trans Suicide Prevention
For information about trans suicide and helping a person who is feeling suicidal, please download one of the following brochures:
- To assist a friend or someone you know in the community: Community Brochure
- For professionals who serve trans communities and want information on helping suicidal clients or patients: Providers’ Brochure
- Anonymous, toll-free information, referrals and support
Outside Gender Therapy Options
Fenway cannot guarantee transgender cultural competence of outside providers. We recommend you interview any provider and find one that fits with your needs and expectations.
Informed Consent Documents
- Informed Consent for Feminizing Therapy (English)
- Informed Consent for Feminizing Therapy (Spanish)
- Informed Consent for Masculinizing Therapy (English)
- Informed Consent for Masculinizing Therapy (Spanish)
- Informed Consent for Puberty Blockers for Minors (English)
- Informed Consent for Puberty Blockers for Minors (Spanish)
- Fenway Health Parent/Guardian Consent for Treatment of Minor (English)
Downloadable Self-Injection Guide for people who are managing their own intramuscular or subcutaneous injections of hormones. [These guidelines are not meant to replace proper training in injecting techniques and safety precautions. Please talk to your medical provider first and get proper training before attempting to self-inject using these guidelines.]
Injection Dose Calculator
Use this calculator to figure out how much of your medicine (volume) to inject. Only enter numbers in the calculator (i.e., 1 or 1.0 or 10). Do not enter letters or other characters. Click on the “Solve” button. The “volume to take,” is the amount to fill or draw the medicine up to in the syringe. For instance if 100mg is prescribed to you and you have a concentration of 200mg/mL in a 1.0 mL vial, the volume you take will be 0.5mL or cc as marked on the syringe. This is one-half of 1 cc. You can look at the syringe illustrations below to help visualize this. If you have any questions on your dose, call your medical prescriber. For Fenway patients, call the nursing call center at 617-927-6300.
Needle and Syringe Disposal
For information on proper disposal of needles and syringes, including a list of needle and syringe disposal sites, click here
Fenway Health offers medical and behavioral health care for gender diverse youth under 18 at all of our clinical sites.
To schedule a visit at the Trans Youth Clinic:
- Ansin Building, 1340 Boylston and Fenway: South End, 142 Berkeley Street – 617.927.6000
These sites see ALL ages and treat trans children, including puberty suppression as appropriate.
- Sidney Borum, Jr. Health Center, 75 Kneeland Street – 617.457.8140
This site sees patients 12-29 years old only.
Call the numbers above and request an appointment at the Trans Youth Clinic.
For more information on what to expect at the clinic, please refer to the Minors & Hormones Resource at the top of this page.
The Fenway Institute at Fenway Health has a robust Transgender Health Research program that is conducting ground-breaking research to improve the health and well-being of transgender people everywhere. To learn more about studies actively enrolling transgender folks, please visit the current studies at the Fenway Institute.
*Sort by studies for trans people.
For a webinar on how to assess readiness for gender affirming surgeries and write referral letters, click on this link.
For additional educational supports, please visit The National LGBT Health Education Center and check their free webinars and training modules. For more information please contact email@example.com.
Sample Surgical Referral Letters
- Compass (New England trans-masculine community peer support group)
- FTM International
- Hudson’s FTM Comprehensive Resource Guide
- Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition
- New England Trans Women’s Alliance
- Learn how to Become Workplace Guide for Transgender Individuals
- Trans Club of New England
- The Transitional Male Transsexual Roadmap
- Trans Youth Equality Foundation
Health Information and Resources:
- A Guide to iPLEDGE
- Reproductive Health Access Project: Birth Control Across the Gender Spectrum
- Trans Pulse online resources
- RAD Remedy online resources
- Resources for TransMen on HIV and Reproductive Health
- Gender Confirmation Center
- The World Professional Association for Transgender Health
- UCSF Center of Excellence for Transgender Health
- New England Collaboration. Access. Research. Education (C.A.R.E.) Consortium
- University of Southern California Department of Nursing – Redefining Safe Spaces for Transgender Patients
- International Journal of Transgenderism
- Trans Health Research
- Fenway Health Binding Guide
Additional Services for Trans and Gender Diverse People:
Any other questions?
857.313.6589 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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