The Sexual and Gender Minority (LGBTQ+) Medical Trainee: The Journey Through Medical Education


East Florida


Aventura Hospital and Medical Center

Document Type


Publication Date



Graduate medical education (GME), LGBTQ+, Medical education, Mentorship, Undergraduate medical education (UME)


Medical Education | Medicine and Health Sciences


In this literature overview, we share with the reader challenges faced by LGBTQ + individuals pursuing medical education, from undergraduate to postgraduate training. The LGBTQ + acronym has evolved to encompass the diverse spectrum of sexual orientation and gender identities. Recently, the term "Sexual and Gender Minority" (SGM) has emerged as an umbrella term to provide consistency in research advancing SGM health. The unique obstacles LGBTQ + trainees encounter are highlighted throughout this article, including external factors influencing career decisions, a lack of LGBTQ + healthcare curricula, discriminatory social interactions, limited mentorship opportunities, and a higher mental health burden. These challenges have the capacity to affect educational experiences, personal well-being, and professional growth. Additionally, we examine the impact of inclusive institutional climates on LGBTQ + trainees' selection of medical schools and residency programs, as they may prioritize inclusiveness and diversity when making their choice. In postgraduate training, LGBTQ + trainees continue to face challenges, exemplified by disparities in placement rates and discriminatory experiences based on sexual orientation and gender identity. We describe the gap in current research and its long-term impact of these challenges on career paths. Hostile environments persist in certain specialties, and the lack of LGBTQ + mentorship and support can hinder academic pursuits. We shed light on the unique and pervasive challenges faced by LGBTQ + trainees throughout their medical education journey, while emphasizing the need for inclusive policies, support systems, and research to address these challenges. With increasing research and studies, we hope to create a medical workforce and community that better represents the diverse communities it serves.

Publisher or Conference

BMC Medical Education