Skip Navigation LinksOA_Transgender_Community_Health_in_California

Office of aids

Header saying Transgender Community Health in California, and displaying the transgender flag colors

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) values the health of all Californians. There are an estimated 220,000 Trans/Transgender/Gender Non-Binary adults in California.1

Everyone has a gender, a gender identity, and a gender expression. No two individuals experience their gender, gender identity, or gender expression the same way.


​Inclusive umbrella terms for individuals whose gender identity or expression (masculine, feminine, other) is different from their sex (male, female) at birth, assigned male at birth (AMAB) or assigned female at birth (AFAB).

Gender Identity icon showing a non-gender conforming silhouette of an individual holding a magnifying glass in front of

Refers to one’s internal understanding of one’s own gender, or the gender with which an individual identifies. 

Gender Expression icon showing three arrows emanating out from a single source

A term used to describe individuals’ outward presentation of their gender.

Gender identity and sexual orientation are different facets of identity. Everyone has a gender identity and a sexual orientation, but an individual’s gender does not determine an individual’s sexual orientation. Trans/Transgender/Gender Non-Binary individuals experience their sexual orientation in multiple expressions.

Transgender individuals, particularly transgender women of color, have higher rates of HIV infection. Rates are especially high among African American transgender women.

ThisGraph displaying rates of New HIV Diagnoses Among Transgender Individuals in California per 100,000 from 2010 to 2018

In 2018, 86 percent of transgender individuals who received an HIV diagnosis were transgender women. Although rates among transgender individuals are not available, it is estimated that both transgender  women  and  men are disproportionately  affected  by HIV. According to an analysis conducted by CDC scientists, HIV prevalence among transgender individuals in the US is estimated to be 9.2 percent overall, and higher among transgender women (14.1 percent) than transgender men (3.2 percent). 

The higher HIV prevalence among transgender women compared to other high risk groups may be due to many environmental and social contexts including multiple stigmas (transphobia, racism, sexism, HIV, and sex work); substance use; recurrent incarceration and victimization in the criminal justice system; homelessness and marginal housing; relationship and other forms of violence; institutional inattention, indifference, and mistreatment; mental health issues; lack of economic opportunities; and other issues.2

The Trans Reality infographic listed below further highlights barriers Transgender individuals experience.

Trans Reality               Trans Reality Infographic (PDF)

Significant Dates

International Transgender Day of Visibility

Observed each year on March 31, this day is dedicated to celebrating transgender individuals and raising awareness of discrimination faced by transgender individuals worldwide, as well as a celebration of their contributions to society.

National Transgender HIV Testing Day

Observed each year on April 18, this day is an opportunity to recognize the importance of routine HIV testing and status awareness, as well as HIV prevention and patient-centered care for transgender and gender non-binary individuals.

Transgender Awareness Month

The month of November celebrates the transgender and gender nonconforming communities and raises awareness for the community through education and advocacy activities.

Transgender Awareness Week

Observed November 13 – 19 each year, people and organizations around the country help raise the visibility of transgender individuals and address issues members of the community face.

Transgender Day of Remembrance

Transgender Day of Remembrance is an annual international observance on November 20 that honors the memory of the transgender individuals whose lives were lost in acts of anti-transgender violence and transphobia that year.


Page Last Updated :