Chatting with a healthcare professional can be frustrating, especially when you have to personally bypass the fear of preconceived judgment and share deep intimate details about yourself. If this experience is remotely relatable, then we ask you to take a moment to imagine how magnified this may seem for members of the LGBTQ+ community, who constantly feel underserved.
"More than half of all LGBTQIA+ people face discrimination while seeking medical care," FOLX Founder A.G. Breitenstein tells Byrdie exclusively. She continues, "One in five trans people are refused care, and 42 percent of trans women report being verbally or physically assaulted in healthcare settings."
Simply put, the everyday toxic discrimination of the LGBTQIA+ community has disturbingly spilled into the healthcare industry. And unfortunately, the numbers are staggering with many experiencing some kind of bias or shame while seeking medical support.
More than half of all LGBTQIA+ people face discrimination while seeking medical care.
"We are constantly labeled as abnormal, risky, or sick. By building our own healthcare models based on informed consent and patient control, we have created a new structure of care that centers and celebrates our community," Breitenstein explains about the inspiration behind FOLX, an affordable healthcare company designed for Queer and Trans people, with plans starting as low as $59/Month.
Launching today (Dec. 3), FOLX is poised to be the first-ever digital healthcare service provider specifically designed to deliver fully customizable medical plans for the LGBTQIA+ community.
Putting the power and control back into the hands of the community, Breitenstein visualizes a healthcare system that will break down barriers and leave users feeling seen, heard, and respected. This is realistically achievable thanks to a carefully selected team of LGBTQIA+ doctors and nurse-practitioners, who are not only knowledgeable but also understand the everyday lifestyles of gender-nonconforming individuals.
The online platform promises to expertly combine access to a specialized network of clinicians, along with tailored clinical offerings that are typically marginalized in traditional health settings. Some notable offerings include gender-affirming hormone therapy, ED, PrEP, and STI testing.
For extra privacy and guidance, each plan will include unlimited on-demand clinical support, at-home lab testing, and even home-delivered medications.
"Privacy is important because it puts people back in control of their lives and their bodies," Breitenstein reminds us. "Not all of us live in places where being out is safe, so it is important to make sure that care is available, private, and accessible at home."
Privacy is important because it puts people back in control of their lives and their bodies.
Thus far, the feedback from early members proves that the labor of love was worth fighting for. "Feedback for the upcoming launch has almost surpassed our enthusiasm for creating this platform," she reveals. "Our early members have given us enthusiastic reviews for our patient-controlled care model, our Queer & Trans centric clinicians, and our home-delivered medications. This is an essential platform for LGBTQIA+ community and it is being received as such." She adds, "We want healthcare to not be something that is dreaded, but rather something that will help people live their best and healthiest lives."
While FOLX does not accept insurance at this time, plans will be offered at prices similar to or below most copay/deductible rates. To learn more, visit Folxhealth.com.