Indonesia’s first gay medical clinic opens in Bali

November 3rd, 2011 - 12:18 pm ICT by IANS  

Jakarta, Nov 3 (IANS/AKI) The first medical clinic for gay patients has opened in the Indonesia’s tourist destination Bali.

The initiative aims to serve gays, lesbians and transgenders that are often denied admission to public medical facilities because of discrimination, according to Antara news agency.

“The Bali Medika Clinic will be a safe haven for gays and transexuals that continue to experience difficulty getting access to treatment at general health care facilities, Dewa Nyoman Wirawan, an adviser for the clinic, told Antara.

Wirawan said the facility will provide general medical check-ups, as well as screening for sexually transmitted diseases, hormone therapy and psychological support.

The centre has been taking patients since Sep 27 but was officially opened Saturday.

The Gaya Dewata Foundation, which provides counseling and promotes safe sex practices among Bali’s gay community, says the clinic will be welcomed by a community scared to find help in a society that shuns them.

“The gay and transgender community here tends to be closed off and its members are reluctant to let anyone find out about their sexual orientation, so they tend to avoid seeking medical treatment when they fall ill,” Christian Supriyadinata, the foundation’s director, told Antara.

–IANS/AKI
rd/mj

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