UKE sets up medical website for transgender people

German government puts EUR 940,000 towards telehealth project
22 May 2020
UKE's research campus

Transgender people in northern Germany can now consult the i2TransHealth telehealth website set up by the Interdisciplinary Transgender Care Center Hamburg (ITHCCH) at the University Hospital Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE), a press release said Thursday (May 7, 2020). The site hopes to improve the health care of transgender people and to lower their levels of stress. The German government's Innovation Fund is putting EUR 940,000 towards the project over the next three years. If successful, the i2TransHealth project could become a permanent fixture and might be extended to other regions in Germany.

i2TransHealth - interdisciplinary online project

Transgender denotes a person whose personal identity and gender does not correspond to their sex at birth. They often bear a psychological burden, if they are not treated at all or incorrectly treated: "This applies especially to people who do not live near one of the few centres that specialise in the health care of transgender people. We have launched the interdisciplinary and internet-based project i2TransHealth to help these people," said Dr. Timo Nieder, head of the special outpatient clinic for sexual health and transgender care at the Institute for Sexual Research and Sexual Medicine at UKE. 

Study to gauge effectiveness

The i2TransHealth project targets people aged 18 and over who live more than 50 kilometres from Hamburg. They can take part in the study by using the platform to find a regional doctor who has been trained by experts at UKE. The doctor becomes their general practitioner and provides psychiatric care for issues indirectly linked to transsexuality. The UKE researchers hope to gauge the effectiveness of the new health care offer and whether it has a positive effect on participants. Efforts are also underway to determine whether the i2TransHealth project can lower the costs incurred by health insurers due to incorrect treatment of transgender people.

Interdisciplinary Transgender Care Center Hamburg (ITHCCH)

Founded in 2013, the Interdisciplinary Transgender Care Center Hamburg (ITHCCH) offers integrative, holistic and patient-centred health care to improve the quality of treatment for transgender people. Initial contact with ITHCCH is usually made through the Special Outpatient Clinic for Sexual Health and Transgender Care at the Institute and the UKE's Polyclinic for Sexual Research and Sexual Medicine.