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Special-“T” Training: Extended Follow-up Results from a Residency-Wide Professionalism Workshop on Transgender Health



Transgender people face unique challenges when accessing health care, including stigma and discrimination. Most residency programs devote little time to this marginalized population.


The authors developed a 90-min workshop to enhance residents’ ability to empathize with and professionally treat transgender patients. Attendees completed pre-, post, and 90-day follow-up surveys to assess perceived empathy, knowledge, comfort, interview skill, and motivation for future learning.


Twenty-two residents (64.7 %) completed pre- and post-workshop surveys; 90.9 % of these completed the 90-day follow-up. Compared to baseline, there were statistically significant post-workshop increases in perceived empathy, knowledge, comfort, and motivation for future learning. However on 90-day follow-up, there were no statistically significant differences across any of the five domains, compared to baseline.


This workshop produced significant short-term increases in resident professionalism toward transgender patients. However, extended follow-up results highlight the limitations of one-time interventions and call for recurrent programming to yield durable improvements.

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The authors wish to thank Dr. Jack Pula, Dr. Laura Erickson-Schroth, and Renato Barucco for serving as workshop facilitators; the Columbia Psychiatry Scholarly Project Workgroup for assistance in study design; the NYSPI/Columbia University LGBT Health Initiative for assistance in workshop development; and the New York Presbyterian (Columbia University)/NYSPI adult psychiatry residents for their participation in this evaluation.

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Correspondence to Jeremy D. Kidd.

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The NYSPI IRB determined that this study did not meet the criteria for human subjects research.


On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

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Kidd, J.D., Bockting, W., Cabaniss, D.L. et al. Special-“T” Training: Extended Follow-up Results from a Residency-Wide Professionalism Workshop on Transgender Health. Acad Psychiatry 40, 802–806 (2016).

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  • Transgender persons
  • Professionalism
  • Internship and residency
  • Medical education