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IntroductionLesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and other sexual and gender minority (LGBTQ+) individuals have an increased scope of healthcare needs and face many barriers to accessing healthcare. However, LGBTQ+ healthcare education remains scarce, and students’ understanding of LGBTQ+ healthcare remains largely uncharacterised. This study investigated the knowledge of and attitudes toward LGBTQ+ healthcare among medical students in Singapore and the United Kingdom (UK), two culturally different countries.MethodsMedical students in two medical schools, one in Singapore and the other in the UK, completed self-administered cross-sectional surveys using multiple-choice, Likert scale, and free-text questions to explore their ideas, concerns, and expectations about LGBTQ+ healthcare education within their medical curricula.ResultsFrom 330 responses, students’ knowledge levels were moderate overall, with pronounced gaps in certain areas, including terminology, sexual health, and conversion therapy. Deficiencies in knowledge were significantly greater among students in Singapore compared to the UK (p < 0.001), whilst LGBTQ+ students and non-religious students had more positive knowledge and attitudes than students not identifying. At least 78% of students had positive attitudes towards LGBTQ+ individuals, but 84% had not received LGBTQ+-specific medical education. Although junior UK students were more satisfied with the adequacy of teaching by their medical school’s incorporation of LGBTQ+ inclusive teaching in a newer curriculum, qualitative analyses suggested that students in both countries wanted to receive more training. Students further suggested improvements to the medical curriculum to meet their needs.ConclusionStudents in both schools lacked understanding of commonly-used terminology and topics such as sexual healthcare despite affirming attitudes towards LGBTQ+ healthcare. Although sociolegal contexts may affect students’ perspectives, differences were less than thought, and students were equally keen to provide affirmative care to their patients. They emphasised a need for more formal teaching of LGBTQ+ healthcare professions to overcome healthcare disparities in these communities.

Original publication




Journal article


Frontiers in Medicine


Frontiers Media SA

Publication Date