Would you like to share your UCLA Health experience with others? We’d love to hear from you.
The UCLA Gender Health Program is committed to providing the highest quality of patient care. We take great pride in being able to share a few of our patients’ stories with you.
The UCLA Gender Health Program was established to provide a knowledgeable staff in a compassionate environment for transgender or gender-diverse people of all ages to receive health care. One couple that recently came to UCLA for pregnancy care with Dr. Valentina M. Rodriguez, an obstetrician/gynecologist at UCLA, knew from the outset their experience would be different from their past health-care interactions.
I found The Gender Health Program when I was referred by my surgeon to get a pre-op examination. I was nervous at first, because going to the doctor can be really stressful when you're transgender. However, the program was so nice and cool! Everybody was really respectful and made sure I was comfortable, and Dr. Amy Weimer is my favorite doctor I've ever seen.
A lot of doctors act like gatekeepers for transgender people, but Dr. Weimer was an ally from the get-go. She helped me explore my options and was super understanding and supportive. I even figured out some cool new stuff with her help. I think I'm going to see her as my Primary Care doctor, because finding a transgender-friendly care provider is so tough, and she's awesome.
It's taken me a long time to accept myself. Twenty years ago, when I finally began the process, it was almost impossible to get insurance companies to pay for trans related care of any kind. Around 2002, I intuitively and stubbornly began to do whatever I could to confirm what I already knew about who I was. A friend I knew had a big jug of Premarin, and I consulted the only Doctor I had access to; Dr. Internet. After a few weeks, I began feeling calmer and more clear-headed. I don't regret taking the estrogen at all, but I do regret the direction I could have gotten from a knowledgeable physician; who knew what Testosterone blockers were, or how to get a prescription for them?
I've had caring physicians help me with my trans-related care, since, but recently, I was forced to find a new one by circumstances beyond anyone's control. I'm fortunate to have excellent health insurance and it was through them (and my own instinct) that I found Dr. Amy Weimer and the UCLA Gender Health Program. I had a morning appointment at the offices in Santa Monica and frankly, I was nervous. I had an irrational fear that I’d be rejected, or turned down; over the years I’d learned to tamp down my expectations.