LifeBridge Health AffirmCare ribbon cutting ceremony. Pictured: LifeBridge Health Medical Group President Dr. Matthew Poffenroth; AffirmCare patient Eric Crouse; AffirmCare provider Dr. Kjell Wiberg; Deborah Dunn, PA-C, MBA Vice Chair and Maryland Commission on LGBTQ Affairs; Christopher Roberson AffirmCare Nurse Practitioner; Kirk Mitchell, from the Baltimore County Office of Community Engagement; Baltimore County Chief Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer Sevetra Peoples Brown; and LifeBridge Health Chief Diversity Officer Dr. Sybil Pentsil. Photo courtesy of LifeBridge Health.

LifeBridge Health announced a new healthcare facility, AffirmCare, which will focus on the specific needs of the LGBTQIA+ community.

The clinic held a ribbon-cutting ceremony on International Transgender Day of Visibility, March 31. It is located at 849 Fairmount Ave., Suite 100B, in Towson.

AffirmCare will offer primary care services such as regular check-ups, gender-affirming hormone therapy treatment, education and more.

AffirmCare doctors and staff are trained LGTBQIA+ community members and allies, led by Dr. Kjell Wiberg, an internal medicine physician and infectious disease specialist.

“The LGBTQIA+ community is an underserved population, where people often face barriers in their healthcare journeys, ranging from a lack of understanding to actual discrimination in some cases,” Wiberg said. “Through AffirmCare, we will support people in reaching their full potential and being their best, including encouraging people to seek new opportunities and not be afraid of being themselves.”

With the AffirmCare facility, LifeBridge Health aims to provide better care for gender and sexual minority individuals.

“We need providers who understand the specific challenges that we as a community face,” said Eric Crouse, a LifeBridge Health team member. “We need to feel both safe and accepted in our healthcare regardless of our sexual orientation or gender identity. When you give patients that affirmation, there is a greater likelihood of success on their journey toward a healthier life.”

The health system established a LGBTQIA+ employee resource group (ERG) to give staff a platform to advocate for support and resources, share experiences, organize events, and more.

According to system officials, the group played a major role in the name “AffirmCare.”

 “Our LGBTQIA+ ERG felt the name AffirmCare conveyed a positive message to our patients that they will be accepted and understood by those providing healthcare services,” said LifeBridge Health Chief Diversity Officer Dr. Sybil Pentsil. “We are committed to fostering a culture of belonging at LifeBridge Health and are so thankful for the input and support of these team members.” 

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Latrice Hill is a Baltimore native and Morgan State University graduate who loves all the great things this city has to offer. She worked with WMAR 2-News as an Assignment Desk Editor before she joined...

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