Interview: Dr Ashwin Kaniah, Palliative Medicine Advanced Trainee - LGBTIQ+ Health Australia

Interview: Dr Ashwin Kaniah, GP and Palliative Medicine Advanced Trainee

Much to consider for doctors working in palliative care aiming to practice inclusive care

Dr Ashwin Kaniah, GP and Palliative Medicine Advanced Trainee

Once we have more data when it comes to healthcare workers in palliative care, this may reflect the need for mandatory training in all healthcare institutions, mirroring what has been done with cultural sensitivity training regarding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people,” Dr Kaniah said.

Dr Kaniah has been involved in the early stages of developing the eLearning modules and is currently working in palliative medicine whilst he completes specialist training.

“We must also consider our transgender community members, and ensure we have discussions about their hormone treatment decisions as they enter their end of life phase,” Dr Kaniah said.

Dr Kaniah said healthcare professionals must consider the kind of trauma and discrimination LGBTIQ+ communities have experienced during their lifetime and realise that LGBTIQ+ peoples will continually be gauging if they can trust their healthcare providers.

“It is important to realise that health equality and health equity are not the same, we cannot generalise healthcare, a one size fits all, it must be customised to the needs of the many communities which exist,” Dr Kaniah said.

Dr Kaniah also highlighted the importance of advocating for LGBTIQ+ patient rights, especially regarding appointing one’s enduring guardian (substitute decision maker) and power of attorney when it comes to respecting a patient’s goals and values.

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LGBTIQ+ Health Australia, (formerly the National LGBTI Health Alliance), is the national peak health organisation in Australia for organisations and individuals that provide health-related programs, services and research focused on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer people and other sexuality, gender and bodily diverse (LGBTIQ+) people and communities. Dropping the “+” from our name only occurs within digital formats that do not allow mathematical symbols, such as within our domain name, handles and hashtags.
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