While lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) people have made huge strides towards equal rights in the U.S., they continue to face unique health care disparities. They are at increased risk and experience higher rates of certain diseases: for example, bisexual women have a higher prevalence of diabetes than heterosexual women and have the highest rate of breast cancer.
There are also huge gaps about LGBTQ health in the published literature. Information about sexual orientation and gender identity is rarely collected in federal surveys or health studies, and what information has been collected is often difficult to find due to the lack of standard terminology and measurements. Additionally, most research has neglected racial and ethnic subpopulations, as well as children and older adults.
The Population Research in Identity and Disparities for Equality Study – or PRIDE Study – aims to rectify this situation.
Led by University of California, San Francisco researchers Mitchell R. Lunn and Juno Obedin-Maliver, The PRIDE Study has already enrolled more than 17,000 participants across the U.S. It is the first national longitudinal cohort study to focus on the health of LGTBQ and SGM (sexual and gender minority) individuals – and also the first to use a mobile app to study a population.
Participants will fill out an annual survey via the PRIDE Study app, based on Apple’s open-source software framework ResearchKit. Some may also be invited to take surveys designed for specific subgroups, such as bisexual women or people of color.
“There’s a real lack of evidence-based information on community health,” said Obedin-Maliver. “The current landscape for LGBTQ health is less of a map and more of a signpost in the desert. We aim to create that map.”
To learn more about and participate in The PRIDE Study, visit http://pridestudy.org/index.html