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Challenge 3 - Patient-based Scenario

Welcome to Challenge 3. 

The third challenge is the first of our practice-based scenarios. Whilst this scenario relates to community and general practice pharmacy, the learning can be applied across all sectors of practice.



Please read the statement below from an LGBT patient discussing the experiences they have had when accessing pharmacy services. Then, take some time to reflect on your own practice, what you have learnt, and any learning needs identified.


Patient Statement:

“In 10 years of accessing trans related healthcare in Cardiff I’ve changed surgery four times and changed the pharmacy I use to collect medication eight times. In some I’ve experienced direct discrimination from people that clearly are transphobic, in some it’s a case that staff have just not received any training or support when it comes to gender identity and don’t how to support and/or don’t recognise transphobia from colleagues.

It’s only been the last one and a half years that I’ve found a pharmacy that treats me like a human being, like I used to get treated everywhere before I started my transition. They refer to me using the correct pronouns and if any staff member is not sure they use my name instead of assuming.

I can’t tell you just how valuable having that single interaction with someone who treats you like any other person is. In a world in which I’m terrified to use public toilets, terrified to access single sex spaces, terrified to go shopping for clothes without an attendant outing me and kicking me out of a changing room. It really does keep you going knowing that there’s a service that will just be nice to me, support me, and help me get the medication I need.

I’ve had instances in which pharmacy staff ignore my name, my pronouns, and the way I’m expressing gender through clothing etc and refer to a mystery woman that I must be picking up the prescription on behalf of. I’ve had others demand identification even though I’ve explained that my documents would still have my deadname on it because it’s expensive to change. They’ve then gone on to use my deadname and see it as an excuse to get away with using the incorrect pronouns.

I’ve experienced surgeries that even though I’ve completed the ‘change of details’ form five times, they still call my deadname out over the loudspeaker to out me. I’ve had pharmacy staff refuse to even look at me when serving me.

It makes such a difference when staff are trained, when people learn about the lived experience of trans people and what we are up against, when colleagues are given the tools to pushback against transphobia in their workplace. No one needs to be an expert on all things trans, but people do need to be allies. It makes a difference; it will literally save a life.”




A report commissioned by Stonewall found that:

  • 13% of LGBT people have experienced some form of unequal treatment from healthcare staff because they are LGBT
  • almost 25% have witnessed discriminatory or negative remarks against LGBT people by healthcare staff 
  • almost 15% have avoided treatment for fear of discrimination because they are LGBT.

Questions to support reflection:
  1. How did this scenario make you feel?
  2. What did you learn?
  3. How will you implement this learning in your practice?
  4. Have you identified any additional learning needs?
  5. Is there anything that you could do in your practice to better support members of the LGBT community?

If you would like to further your learning or if you have identified any additional learning needs, a signposting resource will be available at the end of the campaign  and will provide links to further reading and e-learning packages to support you in your continued development.