The Equitas Health Institute's virtual 2020 Transforming Care Conference on LGBTQ+ HIV & Health Equity opens Wednesday, October 14 with Jessica Halem's presentation of "Mourn the Dead & Fight Like Hell for the Living." As a stand-up comic, Halem shared the stage with Margaret Cho and opened for Lady Gaga at NYC Pride. As the former inaugural LGBTQ
Outreach & Engagement Director at Harvard Medical School, Halem oversaw double-digit growth of first year students who self-identify as LGBTQ and secured a $1.5M grant to integrate sexual and gender minority health equity into Harvard's curriculum.
"I spent 15 years working as a professional stand-up comic. There is no better training and experience than comedy and improv skills for diving into uncharted waters with optimism and compassion," explains Halem. "I love to teach others in healthcare how basic improv techniques can sharpen their communication skills. The challenges we face are too important — we must learn new tools to reach new audiences."
The theme for this year's Transforming Care Conference is The Invisibles. In its fifth year, the Transforming Care Conference will focus its attention on how public health narratives about LGBTQ+ and HIV communities often exclude lesbians, bi & pansexual people, transgender men & women, non-binary people, people living with disability or mental illness, people of color, asexual people, and Black & Latina cisgender women. In "Mourn the Dead," Halem will map important points in the history of American LGBTQ+ health to underscore how the healthcare system continues to fail patients and providers, encouraging participants to become part of the solution.
"I believe we can all be agents of change to ensure LGBTQ+ patients receive better care," declares Halem. "No matter where we work in the vast healthcare system, we can be the change."
The 2020 Transforming Care Conference on LGBTQ+ HIV & Health Equity is sponsored by The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, Gilead, University Hospitals, Columbus Public Health, Midwest Breast & Aesthetic Surgery, United Healthcare, Planned Parenthood, and OhioHealth.
ABOUT THE EQUITAS HEALTH INSTITUTE
The Equitas Health Institute focuses on reducing health disparities in the LGBTQ+ community as the education and research arm of Equitas Health. The Equitas Health Institute delivers exceptional LGBTQ+ culturally competent healthcare education & training, engages with LGBTQ+ patients, works with community-based organizations, and supports regional LGBTQ+ health research efforts.
To learn more, please visit EquitasHealthInstitute.com .
ABOUT EQUITAS HEALTH
Established in 1984, Equitas Health is a regional nonprofit community healthcare system. A federally designated Community Health Center, it is one of the largest LGBTQ+ and HIV/AIDS serving healthcare organizations in the United States. With 19 offices in 13 cities, Equitas Health serves tens of thousands of patients in Ohio, Kentucky, and West Virginia each year through patient-centered, integrated, and cutting edge services, including primary and specialized medical care, pharmacy, dentistry, behavioral health, HIV/STI treatment and prevention, PrEP/PEP, Ryan White/HIV case management, care navigation, advocacy, and other community health initiatives. The Equitas Health Pharmacy is an integral and essential part of the health center's comprehensive care and business models, reinvesting 100% of profits back into the organization's programs and services. Equitas Health operates pharmacies serving patients in Ohio and Texas.
The Equitas Health Institute and the Buckeye Region Anti-Violence Organization ( BRAVO ) are divisions of Equitas Health.
Visit equitashealth.com or follow Equitas Health on Facebook and Twitter.
Also see Jessica Halem, MBA www.jessicahalem.com/ .