Moffitt launches national effort to expand oncologists' understanding of LGBTQ patients

Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Fla., is launching a study that will nationally expand its training curriculum to help oncologists better understand LGBTQ patient populations and gain awareness of disparities in their care, according to the Tampa Bay Times

The expanded training follows a 2019 U.S. survey led by Moffitt researchers that found only half of oncologists said they were confident in their understanding of LGBTQ patients' health needs.

In October, Moffitt researchers will invite nearly 2,000 oncologists to participate in the new study with a goal of enlisting 600 by April. Some oncologists will undergo the training program Moffitt developed in 2018, known as COLORS — it stands for Curriculum for Oncologists on LGBTQ populations to Optimize Relevance and Skills. Other oncologists will participate in a general LGBTQ health education training.

Participating physicians will be surveyed after their training, and the results will help Moffitt researchers refine their educational programming by identifying the strengths and weaknesses of the 2018 training program.

"After we make sure we have a proven education program for oncologists, our goal is to work our way all the way through care delivery," Matthew Schabath, PhD, principal investigator of the study and associate member in Moffitt's cancer epidemiology program, told the Tampa Bay Times.

Dr. Schabath said he hopes COLORS will be modified for other U.S. healthcare professionals, including nurses and advanced practice providers. 

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