Midwest LGBTQ Health Symposium 2021

On September 29-30, 2021, the Midwest LGBTQ Health Symposium 2021 (MLHS 2021), presented by Howard Brown Health’s Center for Education, Research and Advocacy, will gather healthcare professionals, educators, researchers, patients, community organizations, and advocates from across the country to share evidence-based practices and to engage in discussions around issues relating to the health of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer communities.

The theme of last year’s MLHS, “Being Healthy is a Radical Act,” was a call to action to LGBTQ folks to become healthy, a declaration that for LGBTQ and other marginalized people, simply being healthy is a radical act. This year’s theme, “Community Informed Care is a Radical Act,” emphasizes the power of an alliance between healthcare professionals and the communities they serve. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the conference will be virtual again this year.

Recognizing that 2020 presented unique healthcare challenges to the LGBTQ community, MLHS organizers say in their press release, “As we enter 2021, the resolve of the LGBTQ community is to facilitate recovery.” Organizers have used suggestions from previous symposium attendees to shape this year’s event:

Longer sessions: Previous conference goers asked that each topic be given more time so presenters are able to go more in-depth.

Concise tracks: Four distinct tracks will be organized by area of study——clinical, programmatic, behavioral, and research.

Important partnerships: Howard Brown is collaborating with the Institute of Sexual and Gender Minority Health and Wellness (ISGMH), Patient Centered Outcomes Research (PCORI) “Next Step” and National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD) to broaden session offerings.

Keynote speakers already signed to appear include Dr. Juno Obedin-Maliver, Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, as well as Epidemiology and Population Health at Stanford University School of Medicine; Miriam Yeung, Executive Director of the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum; Dr. Carlos Rodriguez-Diaz, community health scientist; and Marissa Miller, Founder and Executive Director of Trans Solutions Research and Resource Center.

The Midwest LGBTQ Health Symposium was launched in 2015 to address the need for LGBTQ-focused, culturally appropriate curricula in medical and public health education. The goal of the MLHS is to empower and equip healthcare professionals to offer high-quality care that supports and affirms the LGBTQ community. Researchers, clinicians, and advocates with expertise in policies and programs that advance LGBTQ health equity and justice lead the conference sessions.

Howard Brown Health’s Center for Education, Research and Advocacy (ERA) conducts community-based medical and behavioral research, cultivates responsive healthcare professionals, advances policies that affirm the lives of LGBTQ people and their families, and develops and disseminates community-driven, high-quality best practices in LGBTQ health.

For more information and to register for the symposium, log on to https://events.bizzabo.com/mlhs2021/page/1762020/about-mlhs.

—Reporting by Hank Trout


Hank Trout, Senior Editor, edited Drummer, Malebox, and Folsom magazines in the early 1980s. A long-term survivor of HIV/AIDS (diagnosed in 1989), he is a forty-year resident of San Francisco, where he lives with his husband Rick.