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Examining Health Care Mobility of Transgender Veterans Across the Veterans Health Administration.

Wang KH, McAvay G, Warren A, Miller ML, Pho A, Blosnich JR, Brandt CA, Goulet JL. Examining Health Care Mobility of Transgender Veterans Across the Veterans Health Administration. LGBT health. 2021 Feb 1; 8(2):143-151.

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Transgender veterans are overrepresented in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) compared with in the general population. Utilization of multiple different health care systems, or health care mobility, can affect care coordination and potentially affect outcomes, either positively or negatively. This study examines whether transgender veterans are more or less health care mobile than nontransgender veterans and compares the patterns of geographic mobility in these groups. Using an established cohort (? = 5,414,109), we identified 2890 transgender veterans from VHA electronic health records from 2000 to 2012. We compared transgender and nontransgender veterans on sociodemographic, clinical, and health care system-level measures and conducted conditional logistic regression models of mobility. Transgender veterans were more likely to be younger, White, homeless, have depressive disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and hepatitis C. Transgender veterans were more likely to have been health care mobile (9.9%) than nontransgender veterans (5.2%) (unadjusted odds ratio? = 2.02, 95% confidence interval? = 1.73-2.36). In a multivariable model, transgender status, being separated/divorced, receiving care in less-complex facilities, and diagnoses of depression, PTSD, or hepatitis C were associated with more mobility, whereas older age was associated with less mobility. For the top three health care systems utilized, a larger proportion of transgender veterans visited a second health care system in a different state (56.2%) than nontransgender veterans (37.5%). Transgender veterans were more likely to be health care mobile and more likely to travel out of state for health care services. They were also more likely to have complex chronic health conditions that require multidisciplinary care.

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