First Policy Roundtable

On Friday, March 19, 2021, the First Policy Roundtable of Transcare, a two-year project co-funded in the Framework of the European Union’s Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme (2014-2020), was implemented with the topic “Trascare: Health care for all”. The Policy Roundtable was held under the coordination of the Medical Association of Athens, engaging representatives from public and private health care institutions, members of the academic community, representatives from independent authorities as well as Civil Society organizations. The purpose of the meeting was to present the objectives of the project as well as to develop the first online discussion around policy proposals for the improvement of trans people’s access to healthcare services.

Throughout the e Policy Roundtable participated:

  • Vathiotis Athanasios, Regional vice-governor of Health, internal medicine physician
  •  Marouda-Maria Daniella, Assistant Professor of International Law, Panteion University, Coordinator of International Law and Diploma Studies, Jean Monnet Chair Asst. Prof. EU Solidarity in CIPROHA (Civil Protection and Humanitarian Action) Panteion University (2016-2019)
  • Pangalos Georgios, Attending psychiatrist of the Psychiatric Clinic of the 424 General Military Training Hospital and with a private practice. He is in charge of the Special Clinic of Sexual Medicine of the Euromedica General Clinic of Thessaloniki.
  • Athanasiadis Loukas, psychiatrist, assistant professor at the Medical School of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (AUTH) with a specialization in “psychiatry-psychosexuality”.
  • Apotsos Panagiotis, Psychologist (Aeginite Hospital)
  • Tsitsika Artemis, Psychiatrist – Adolescent specialist – Academic
  •  Kolyri Chloe, Psychiatrist
  • Tsougeni Aikaterini, Health Visitor, Member of the Board of the Panhellenic Association of Health Visitors (Msc Adult Education), Member of the Municipal Equality Committee of the Municipality of Edessa 
  • Trimmi Katerina , Lawyer, Representative of Rainbow Families Greece
  • Dedes Nikos , President of Positive Voice
  • Frangou Roxani, Coordinator and Research Associate of the National Commission for Human Rights
  • Lionis Christos, Professor of General Medicine and Primary Health Care at the Medical School of the University of Crete, Director of Clinical Social and Family Medicine at the Medical School and the University Hospital of Heraklion
  • Markaki Lillian, Member of the board of directors of the Medical Association of Athens, Coordinator of the round table, Psychiatrist
  • Kokkali Erofili, Sexual health consultant on behalf of Positive Voice (Association of HIV-positive people in Greece) and Red Umbrella Athens (Sex Workers Day Center)
  • Linardis Nathanail Evangelos, expert researcher in the Transcare program, on behalf of Colour Youth – Athens LGBTQ Youth Community
  • Paganis Filippos, Psychologist, member of the scientific team of Orlando LGBT+
  • Papathanassiou Nancy, Orlando LGBTQ+
  • Christidis Elena-Olga,  Orlando LGBTQ+
  • Kousoulis Giorgos, Medical Student, HelMSIC

The Policy Roundtable was coordinated by Lilian Markaki, on behalf of the Medical Association of Athens.

The online discussion highlighted the need for a multifarious approach regarding the access of trans people to health services, through the design and implementation of a series of interventions at institutional and practical level, which will aim at combating and preventing the various forms of discrimination faced by trans community, based on identity and/or gender expression. Particular emphasis was placed on the need to raise awareness, information and education of health professionals at all levels with regards to the provision of inclusive services to trans people.

Specific mention was also made to the engagement of international organizations, such as the Council of Europe, in the management of issues concerning trans people and the wider LGBTQI + community, but also in the fact that currently throughout Europe the planning of National Strategies for LGBTQI + issues is under development. Finally, the importance of Mass Media and the dissemination of comprehensive data on trans identities was highlighted, as well as the need for social structures that will provide inclusive support services to trans people and their families.

During the discussion, the importance of the active participation of trans people themselves and the relevant bodies in all stages of the process of planning and implementation of the aforementioned interventions was stressed.

During the next months, a second similar action will be organized in order to raise awareness and activate stakeholders towards the need to combat and prevent discrimination against trans people in the field of health services. Transcare aims to create an inclusive environment, wherein trans people will enjoy equal rights, having as an ultimate goal the improvement of their health and well-being.