Gender Affirming Care

Gender Affirming CareIt’s common practice to assign a gender to babies at birth. However, some people, as they grow older, come to feel like they don’t belong in their bodies. They may ultimately realize they identify as a different gender or are non-binary.

But deciding to take the steps to transition can be daunting. Finding truly supportive care to support the journey is imperative, along with choosing medical professionals who are experts in providing treatments like hormone therapy.

What is Gender Affirming Care?

Gender-affirming care is any medical care, treatment, or therapy performed in support of people who identify as transgender, nonbinary, or intersex. When someone decides to transition to another gender, gender-affirming care is a necessary part of the journey. The goal is to help alleviate any stress or gender dysphoria, as well as help with the physical changes desired to transition to another gender.

The ultimate goal of gender-affirming care is to allow any person who identifies as transgender to live an authentic and comfortable life as their true selves.

Many professionals may be involved in providing gender-affirming care, and they often work together as a team to support the individual. Professionals that may be a part of the care team include:

  • Therapists, psychologists, or counselors to provide initial assessments and support throughout the transition
  • OB/GYNs or endocrinologists to manage hormone therapies necessary for transitioning
  • Surgeons who specialize in reconstructive surgeries, like top surgery or genital reconstruction

What Does it Mean to Transition?

Transition refers to the process by which transgender or gender non-conforming individuals undergo to align their gender identity. The process of transitioning is individual and can vary from person to person. For some people, transitioning can be as simple as changing their clothes, hairstyle, and name to fit their gender identity better, while others choose to transition using medications and surgeries.

Regardless of how a person transitions, live in a way that better aligns one’s appearance and gender expression with one’s internal sense of self.

What Gender Affirming Treatments Are Done by an OB/GYN?

An OB/GYN is an integral part of a transitioning person’s care team. They will help support a transition to a gender other than the one assigned at birth in several ways, including:

Hormone therapy: OB/GYNs can prescribe hormones, such as testosterone or estrogen, as part of gender-affirming hormone therapy. They will monitor hormone levels and adjust dosages to help you achieve your desired physical changes.

Reproductive health care: OB/GYNs can provide reproductive health care, including pelvic exams, Pap smears, and STI screenings, tailored to the needs of transgender and non-binary individuals.

Menstrual suppression: For transgender men or non-binary individuals assigned female at birth, OB/GYNs can offer options for menstrual suppression, such as birth control or other medications, to manage menstruation.

Fertility preservation: For individuals who may want to preserve their fertility before starting hormone therapy or undergoing surgery, OB/GYNs can discuss options for fertility preservation, such as sperm or egg banking.

Oophorectomy and / or Hysterectomy: If a transmasculine individual decides to pursue removal of the uterus and ovaries, OB/GYNs are typically the doctors who will perform the surgery.

Referrals for surgery: OB/GYNs can provide referrals to surgeons who specialize in gender-affirming surgeries, such as chest reconstruction (top surgery).

Advocacy and education: OB/GYNs can advocate for inclusive and affirming care within their practices and communities and educate their colleagues about the unique needs of transgender and non-binary individuals.

Is Gender Affirming Care Covered By Insurance?

Insurance coverage for gender-affirming care can vary widely based on your insurance provider and specific policy details. However, there has been a growing recognition of the importance of gender-affirming care, and many insurance plans have started including coverage.

It is always recommended to contact your insurance company to review coverage details for gender-affirming care under your specific policy.

Expert Gender Affirming Care in Oregon

Women’s Health Center of Southern Oregon is here to help guide you, no matter where you are in your transition journey. Our compassionate and informed healthcare professionals are well-equipped to support you safely during the process.

If you are ready to explore (or begin!) your transition journey, don’t delay further – schedule an appointment today!

Quick Facts
  • Support for transgender people ready to transition

  • Medical expertise for transitions

  • Compassionate care

Gender Affirming Care Providers


“Been going here for about a year and a half, and I have to say the experience is amazing. From doctors listening to my concerns and truly working with me to improve my health. This is especially true on my transition journey, with how friendly they are, very supportive and understanding, along with caring people. It’s even a great shock when my doctor happens to be a male, and isn’t treating me like past male practitioners who denied who I am. Especially with my trauma history with males. So, to have Dr Shelton it’s an incredible experience and I wouldn’t change it for the world. This clinic has been so patient and supportive, especially with my anxiety and fear around hospitals and doctors. So, to have a place as friendly and inviting it’s amazing and easier to vocalize my needs without fighting to be heard. I highly recommend this center.” – A.X.

“I am so glad that I found and made an appointment here, it has been challenging to find local transgender care and HRT until now. The staff are kind and informed and supportive. I tell my friends that need a local resource for transitioning, to make an appointment here first. So many thanks for the support you give our community!” – C.S.