In a groundbreaking move aimed at providing comprehensive healthcare facilities and safeguarding the rights of transgender and queer individuals, the Kerala government is all set to introduce the ‘Queer-Friendly Hospital Initiative’ across the state.
Health Minister Veena George expressed the government’s strong commitment to creating an inclusive health system, where healthcare services are accessible to everyone, regardless of their gender identity. “This government is dedicated to uplifting the transgender community,” stated Minister Veena George. “For the first time, we have granted the transgender community reservations in the nursing field.”
The initiative will be initially implemented in four key districts – Thiruvananthapuram, Ernakulam, Thrissur, and Kozhikode – where healthcare staff has already undergone specialized training to ensure that general hospitals become safe and welcoming spaces for queer individuals.
The government aims to extend this initiative gradually to all healthcare institutions across Kerala. To initiate this effort, the Transgender Community Link Worker (CLW) project has been launched in the aforementioned districts. Community link workers will play a crucial role in bridging the gap between the transgender community and the healthcare system.
These support workers will facilitate access to essential healthcare services, addressing the numerous barriers faced by transgender individuals in society. Their presence will ensure that those in need of healthcare services are guided and cared for efficiently within hospitals.
The ‘Queer-Friendly Hospital Initiative’ signifies Kerala’s commitment to creating a truly inclusive society. This program not only strives to provide vital healthcare but also emphasizes the rights and well-being of transgender and queer individuals, marking a historic milestone in the state’s journey towards inclusivity.