New Research Chair in Gay Men’s Health aims to break down barriers to care

Posted on Monday, January 23, 2023

Dr. Paul MacPherson has just been named Clinical Research Chair in Gay Men’s Health, a new academic role at the Faculty of Medicine and The Ottawa Hospital that is also the first of its kind in any Canadian hospital.

The Ottawa Hospital’s Research Institute and the University of Ottawa helped to make this Chair a reality through the Faculty of Medicine’s Clinical Research Chair program. The role was made possible through the generous support of the Department of Medicine, in addition to community support through The Ottawa Hospital Foundation.  

In this important new role, Dr. MacPherson and his team of researchers will work towards filling some of the biggest gaps that gay men face in the health-care system.

“We will address these issues through a two-pronged approach of educating health-care providers on comprehensive gay men’s health and developing clinical programs that acknowledge and are relevant to gay men,” explains Dr. MacPherson. “And we’ll be reaching out to the gay community to get their feedback and to give them peace of mind that these issues are being addressed.”

A milestone for gay men’s health

As both a researcher and a gay man, Dr. MacPherson knows all too well the stigma, stereotypes and misinformation that gay men often encounter in the health-care system. He has dedicated much of his career to breaking down these barriers by helping health-care providers become more attuned to the unique care needs of gay men.

“I want to make health care more accessible and relevant to gay men,” says the physician-scientist with The Ottawa Hospital’s Clinical Epidemiology Program. “And I want to make gay men’s health less of a mystery to care providers.”

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