Kallio Terveys is Helsinki Pride 2023 Small Business Partner

12 June 2023

Kallio Terveys is an official 2023 Helsinki Pride Small Business Partner. As a Small Business Partner, Kallio Terveys wants to emphasize the human rights of sexual and gender minorities and participate in building a fairer and more tolerant Finland.

The patient should be able to engage with healthcare without worrying about bringing up their sexual orientation or gender experience. In Kallio Terveys, you may be yourself.

“I don’t see what the fuss is about.”

Sexual and gender minorities regularly encounter, even several times a day, situations in which their own sexual orientation or gender experience differs from what is assumed to be the norm. Various microaggressions may be encountered (e.g., underlining comments or people staring), difficulty fitting one’s life situation into any model provided from the outside – or, at worst, outright negativity or aggressive behavior just because someone is being who they are. All this produces minority stress. Healthcare is not an area free from minority stress.

When meeting with LGBTIQ patients, healthcare professionals are equal to the sum of their life experiences, prejudices, and training. Unfortunately, sometimes there are significant problems with these encounters. In addition, minority patients may face the attitudes and prejudices of other people attending healthcare in waiting areas and hospital patient rooms.

The healthcare system is heavily gendered. The Finnish personal identity code dictates patient information systems to gender people; doctors almost always start their anamnesis entry with “xx-year-old man/woman”; hospital clothes are often in two shades, and small sizes are only available in pink and large sizes are always blue.

Healthcare ought to be the place where everyone should have a safe and confident environment to share their problems without fear of discrimination. Even though a lot has gone forward, we could still do better.

”I don’t want my sexuality or gender identity to come up during a doctor’s visit.”

When providing treatment, there are often situations where gender identity or sexual orientation is irrelevant. If an ankle sprains or a flu shot is being given, the gender or the sex partner of a 45-year-old person does not matter. On the other hand, if the ankle breaks disproportionately easily or if one is considering whether a person needs a hepatitis vaccine, the gender, both current and assigned at birth, or sexuality may matter. If these instances have successful communication between the patient and the doctor, it may strengthen the patient’s trust in healthcare and improve the patient-doctor relationship.

Questions related to gender or sexuality might contain surprising medical reasons that may be obvious to a doctor but not to a layperson. If the purpose of a question remains unclear, one should not hesitate to ask why the matter is brought up.

When does Kallio Terveys ask or genderise?

Kallio Terveys has started its operations with PrEP appointments. HIV risk in sex is linked to sexual practices and thus to the sexuality of the person and their partner. In addition, regarding PrEP, the gender assigned at birth guides the evaluation of kidney function. In other contexts, the aim is to consider what is necessary.