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Gender health equity - diverse people

About GHES

As part of the California Department of Public Health’s Office of Health Equity, the Gender Health Equity Section (GHES) plays a leadership role in the development of programs and policies intended to eliminate gender-based health disparities in California. The GHES is dedicated to eliminating systemic bias that impacts health outcomes based on gender, gender identity and sexual orientation, serving as an internal resource to CDPH on these matters. Working in partnership with communities, the GHES also leads in the development and design of initiatives focused on improving the health of LGBTQ+ Californians.


To achieve equitable health outcomes for Californians of all genders and sexual orientations through promotion of inclusive practices and structural change.


Californians of all genders and sexual orientations live in affirming communities and are able to achieve optimal health.


LBTQ Health Equity Initiative

The Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LBTQ) Health Equity Initiative is a first-of-its-kind community-driven initiative to identify and address barriers to health equity for LBTQ and gender non-conforming Californians. The LBTQ Initiative will address gaps in knowledge and research, award grants to fund innovative demonstration projects, promote improved cultural competency in California’s healthcare system and fund local public outreach and education efforts. These programs will emphasize reducing disparities among the most vulnerable communities including LBTQ people of color, elders and young adults. The Initiative is funded through June 2024 and planning and implementation is ongoing.

Please contact us at with any questions or comments about the LBTQ Initiative.

Transgender Wellness & Equity Fund

California founded the Transgender Wellness and Equity Fund (TWEF) in 2020 to reduce the immense health disparities experienced by transgender, gender non-conforming and intersex (TGI) Californians caused by systemic discrimination in healthcare settings, housing, employment and public accommodations. Funding will support TGI-serving organizations and their partners that focus on supportive housing services, therapeutic arts programs, increasing access to gender affirming care, and improving culturally responsive care by health care professionals.

The TWEF will begin planning in October 2021. Until then, please note that we have very limited capacity to respond to individual questions. However, we will update this web page as new information becomes available and if you would like to receive updates about the TWEF, please send us an email at and type INFORMATION in the subject line.

Reproductive Freedom and Abortion Access Initiative

California funded the Reproductive Freedom and Abortion Access Initiative (RFAAI) in 2022 to reduce health inequities by expanding access to information about reproductive and sexual health services, including abortion services, in California. Funding will support three strategies:

  • California Abortion Access Website providing accurate and updated information to the public on the right to abortion under state law, information about reproductive health care providers, and options for coverage for reproductive services including state-funded coverage and programs.
  • California Reproductive Justice and Freedom Fund for community-based reproductive health, rights, and justice organizations to conduct medically accurate and culturally competent outreach and education on sexual health and reproductive health issues.
  • Research on the Unmet Needs for Reproductive Health Care Services

We will post more information on program implementation as it becomes available

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