Pride Month webinar series presented by RWJ/Barnabas PROUD Centers

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LGBT Health rainbow cross with doctors

Babs Siperstein PROUD Center and PROUD Gender Center of NJ address community needs 

During Pride Month, the RWJUH Babs Siperstein PROUD Center in Somerville and RWJUH PROUD Gender Center of New Jersey located in New Brunswick, will host a free webinar series throughout the month for the LGBTQ community. The webinars will be on Tuesday afternoons and will address a variety of topics including family planning, HIV prevention and workplace acceptance and experiences.

On Tuesday, June 15, from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., the 31 Ways to Create a Family educational workshop on LGBTQ family building will feature experts from the Institute for Reproductive Medicine and Science at Saint Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, an RWJBarnabas Health facility. During this webinar, experts will discuss the many ways a family can be created and fertility options such as egg freezing, intrauterine insemination and in vitro fertilization.

The “PrEP! Talk” webinar will take place next week on Tuesday, June 22, from 12-1 p.m. Hosted by representatives from RWJUH Somerset’s Babs Siperstein PROUD Center, the Zufall Health Center and the Hyacinth Foundation, in this session attendees will learn more about PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) and its effectiveness in preventing HIV. The session is designed to be an interactive conversation.

The “PROUD Meet & Greet Panel: Creating Community” will take place on Tuesday, June 29 from 12 to 1 p.m. In this session, attendees will meet the LGBTQ leaders serving the community from the RWJUH Somerset Babs Siperstein PROUD Center and the RWJUH Gender Center of NJ. Panelists will discuss their personal experiences navigating their own identities, share important resources and engage in a discussion around what it means to be “out and proud” in the workforce as LGBTQ community members.

“For far too long, LGBTQ+ health has been an afterthought in the health care community,” said Jackie Baras, MSN, MBA, RN, LGBT Program Director and LGBT Health Navigator for RWJUH. “Providing high quality, culturally competent healthcare to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community is our priority, and we are excited to be able to offer resources through this webinar series to further address their unique health care needs.”

“We’re very much committed to the LGBTQ+ community and it is our priority to make patients feel comfortable, respected and not discriminated against or treated differently because of their sexual orientation or gender identity,” said Paula Gutierrez, Director, Diversity and Inclusion, RWJUH Somerset and Director, Babs Siperstein PROUD Center. “We’re continuing to look for opportunities to better serve these patients.”

RWJUH Somerset’s Babs Siperstein PROUD Center opened in January 2017 in the hospital’s Somerset Family Practice. It was the first of its kind in the state and provides services tailored to meet the unique health care needs of the LGBTQ community in a safe, supportive environment. Services include primary medical care for children and adults, hormone therapy and monitoring, HIV care, health education, counseling, support groups and referrals for specialty services such as behavioral health services.

Babs Siperstein PROUD Center has now expanded to its own space and is open for appointments five days a week. The Center has dedicated staff, including a patient navigator, a team of nurses and a new PrEP counselor. In addition to comprehensive medical services, the Center holds an array of support groups, including ‘PROUD Transitions—Transgender Family Support Group’. Led by facilitators from the transgender community, the group helps parents, spouses, partners and adult children better understand and cope with their transgender family members.

Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital and Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School established The PROUD Gender Center of New Jersey to support the transition of transgender patients. To find out more visit them online. To register for the webinar series, please visit: rwjbh.org/SomersetEvents. To schedule an appointment at RWJUH Somerset’s Babs Siperstein PROUD Center, call 855-776-8334 or visit rwjbh.org/somersetproud. The PROUD Gender Center of New Jersey may be reached at 833-776-8365 or visit rwjbh.org/rwjuhlgbtqia