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Training Vt. doctors on LGBT health care issues - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Training Vt. doctors on LGBT health care issues

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

Do pediatricians in our region know what to do when a gay, lesbian, transgender or bisexual patient visits their doctor's office? A soon-to-be doctor at UVM Medical Center wants to make sure they do.

Dr. Nick Bonenfant is starting his pediatric residency at the UVM Medical Center. He says Vermont doctors are more progressive than most states these days on LGBT health care issues. But that may not be the case for doctors who graduated years ago and some young people feel judged and isolated at their appointments. That could prevent kids from being honest about their health care needs.

"I think going back 10, 20, 30 years there wasn't that foundational knowledge in LGBT health care. It's harmful, I think physicians and pediatricians especially represent a confidential nonjudgmental ally for all kids. I think certain kids, especially those who identify as LGBT, really need an ally and if they don't have that and if they don't have that in a friend or family member, if they're not out, for example, a pediatrician represents a fantastic ally for them," said Bonenfant.

Bonenfant says his peers should be trained in LGBT issues and know about the resources available to young people, especially those looking for help coming out.

Hear more of Darren Perron's conversation with Bonefant on "You Can Quote Me" this Sunday morning at 7:30.

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