Using Gender-inclusive Language Can Improve Patient Experience

Posted By American Med Spa Association, Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Dermatologists should adapt gender-inclusive language and practices to welcome patients seeking gender-affirming care, according to recommendations published in the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology.
“A dermatologist is often a patient’s point of entry into medical care. This is a big responsibility,” Marc M. Beuttler, MD, of the department of dermatology at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, told Healio. “Using pronouns that align with our patients’ identity — whether masculine, feminine or nonbinary — is an important first step toward building a trusting, collaborative patient-physician relationship with the goal of providing optimal care. The second step is using descriptive, rather than historically gendered, language.”

Beuttler and his coauthor, Jennifer L. MacGregor, MD, of UnionDerm in New York City, outlined how clinicians can begin to incorporate gender-inclusive language into their respective practices, from how to address patients individually to what kind of language can be used in written communications, as well as why this is important to all patients, but especially to transgender and nonbinary patients.

A genderless approach to language, which uses specific descriptions rather than labeling certain features as masculine or feminine, is one way to begin being more inclusive.

Read more at Healio >>