THE Victorian AIDS Council (VAC) has welcomed Dr Pauline Cundill to provide GP services to trans and gender diverse people at its premises in Fitzroy, Melbourne.

The new bulk-billing service will operate on Mondays and Thursdays, with appointments available between 9am and 3.30pm from February 22.

  Cundill has over 10 years experience as a GP. As well as working closely with Royal Children’s Hospital Gender Clinic, she also provides training for rural GP registrars.

“A trans and gender diverse health and wellbeing clinic is long overdue in Melbourne,” she said in a statement.

“Having worked in this area over the past 10 years I’ve seen the need for a community space and improved health services for the trans community.

“My role is to provide high quality medical care in an affirming, friendly and safe space.”

VAC project lead Jeremy Wiggins said: “This is a new era for trans health in Victoria and it’s very exciting to have so much community support behind this new service.”

VAC also launched its first Trans and Gender Diverse Advisory Group which will provide advice to the organisation on supporting and promoting the health and wellbeing of Victoria’s sexually and gender diverse communities.

Co-chaired by Wiggins,  the group’s activities include general medical services, sexual health services, alcohol and drugs, HIV services, mental health, health promotion, policy, diversity and inclusion.

“Establishing the Trans and Gender Diverse Advisory Group is a really important step to ensure the trans work we do at VAC is relevant to the community and led by the community,” Wiggins said.

VAC chief executive Simon Ruth said the work of the advisory group would have an impact.

“It’s important that these are community-led initiatives — trans and gender diverse people are identifying gaps in the services and support available in Victoria, and coming to us to tell us what needs to be done,” he said.

“We want the work we do as an organisation to better support trans and gender diverse Victorians, and we’re proud to work with these communities to make that happen.”

Appointments for the trans and gender diverse health service can currently be booked via the PRONTO! website: pronto.org.au

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