Utah's first LGBTQ+ health clinic

Salt Lake City Welcomes UAF Legacy Health, Dedicated to LGBTQ+ Well-being

Salt Lake City – Celebrations filled the air on Thursday evening as Utah’s first-ever LGBTQ+ health clinic officially opened its doors in Salt Lake City. The historic occasion marked a turning point for the state, offering a safe and affirming space for members of the LGBTQ+ community to access comprehensive healthcare.

“What we’re trying to do is switch what healthcare looks like and make sure that interactions are positive and affirming,” said Ahmer Afroz, CEO of UAF Legacy Health, the non-profit organization behind the clinic. Recognizing the negative impact of anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric and legislation, Afroz emphasized the need for a welcoming environment where individuals can openly discuss their health needs without fear of stigma or discrimination.

Located at the former Utah AIDS Foundation office, UAF Legacy Health has transformed, expanding its services to include primary and mental health care alongside specialized HIV prevention and treatment programs. “We’re offering clinical trials with new medications for both HIV and prevention,” shared Dr. Susana Keeshin, the clinic’s Medical Director. This commitment to research and innovation underscores UAF Legacy Health’s dedication to improving health outcomes for LGBTQ+ individuals, a population often underserved by traditional healthcare systems.

While open to everyone, UAF Legacy Health prioritizes the needs of the LGBTQ+ community. “We’re wanting to be kind of a medical home, and medical home also includes mental health,” Dr. Keeshin explained. Recognizing the intersection between physical and mental well-being, the clinic offers holistic care that addresses the unique challenges faced by LGBTQ+ individuals, including discrimination, social isolation, and higher rates of anxiety and depression.

The opening of UAF Legacy Health represents a significant step forward for LGBTQ+ healthcare in Utah. It signals a shift towards greater inclusivity and understanding, offering a beacon of hope for a community that has long faced barriers to accessing quality healthcare. With its commitment to providing affirming and comprehensive care, UAF Legacy Health promises to be a vital resource for LGBTQ+ individuals in Salt Lake City and beyond.

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