Aiming to provide the LGBT community with a convenient place to seek healthcare without discrimination, Borderless Healthcare Group (BHG) unveiled the cloud-based platform Borderless.lgbt this week.
The launch ceremony, held in Ho Chi Minh City on Tuesday, attracted public attention as the platform is perhaps the latest in some of the rarest online platforms that cater to the health of the LGBT community in Ho Chi Minh City and Vietnam.
Borderless.lgbt is an LGBT-centric health and wellness platform that anyone can access from anywhere to get more information.
Dr. Wayne Ho, a Vietnamese-American doctor, senior medical advisor, and co-founder of the Borderless.lgbt platform, delivered the keynote speech, addressing the importance and potential goals of establishing such a health website.
Dr. Ho quoted Vietnam's strategic resolution on gender equality, which assures that homosexuality is not a disease and therefore does not need to be treated or cured.
He pointed out what healthcare providers should do to support sexual minority communities.
Dr. Ho is an HIV and LGBT medicine specialist at the AIDS Project in Los Angeles, a federally recognized health center specializing in healthcare for gay, bisexual, and transgender people.
He is also an internal medicine specialist, clinical educator, and lecturer in medicine at the College of Southern California.
In his speech, Dr. Ho focused on three points: raising awareness of the LGBTQ community, avoiding discrimination, and being fair and respectful of their sexuality.
"We want to present our Borderless.lgbt as part of the solution to the problem," explained Dr. Ho.
As for how Borderless.lgbt can help Vietnam, Dr. Ho said the cloud will focus on a few key points, namely improving understanding of LGBTQ culture and how it affects patient care and insisting on understanding their language, culture, and way of life.
|André Schuett, vice-president of business development at BHG, performs a demo to explain to the audience how the platform works and how the LGBT community can find support on it. Photo: Kim Thoa / Tuoi Tre News|
Borderless.lgbt will provide protocols for comprehensive sexual health that incorporates current, global guidelines.
The online LGBT clinic will also provide STI testing and treatment, HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (Prep) and HIV care, and transgender care including hormone management and psychosocial support.
To make these services as effective as possible, Borderless.lgbt will bring together the best LGBT health and wellness experts from Vietnam and around the world to support the LGBT community.
At the event, André Schuett, vice-president of business development at BHG, explained how the platform works and how the LGBT community can get help there.
He said that Borderless.lgbt offers health services in two ways.
The first is the online clinic, which is run in collaboration with local doctors and health facilities, while the second provides home healthcare.
Currently, Borderless works with more than 10 private clinics in Vietnam.
Nguyen Tat Thanh, a first-degree specialist in infectious disease treatment with 14 years of experience, attended the event as a guest speaker, saying, "Borderless.lgbt is an extremely practical and meaningful project for Vietnamese doctors. We want to update the medical knowledge of HIV and LGBT in the world to develop a deeper understanding and provide better health services to the community."
In Thanh's experience, he has met many gay patients who were reluctant to share their real needs for fear of being judged or because they thought doctors might not understand their problems.
"I believe that Vietnamese doctors will be encouraged by the support of Borderless.lgbt experts and gain more confidence in supporting LGBT patients," said Dr. Thanh.