APTN, Tangerine Academy and IHRI organize Training of Trainers Workshop for Philippines Healthcare Providers 

Published September 13, 2023
Location Philippines
Language English


In August 2023, APTN (Asia Pacific Transgender Network) in partnership with Tangerine Academy and IHRI (Institute of HIV Research and Innovation) hosted a Training of Trainers for Transgender Health and Right Module and Transgender Competent Care Training. Seven healthcare providers from the Philippines attended the workshop to foster cross-learning of good practices of APTN’s newly released tools and to facilitate a discussion to increase adoption of the tool and support the development of clinicians interested in strengthening the access to services for trans people.

Key Highlights Included:

  • Inclusive and Interactive Learning: Engaged in dynamic discussions, case studies, and role-playing exercises that built confidence in addressing transgender health issues.
  • Culturally Competent Care: Learned how to create a safe and affirming healthcare environment, foster trust with transgender patients, and navigate sensitive conversations with empathy.
  • Access to Cutting-Edge Research: Stayed up-to-date with the latest developments in transgender healthcare, including emerging treatments and best practices.
  • Legal and Ethical Considerations: Explored the legal and ethical obligations associated with transgender healthcare, including confidentiality and informed consent.
  • Building a Network: Connected with fellow healthcare professionals who shared a commitment to improving transgender healthcare, fostering collaboration and knowledge sharing.

How it went: 

The first three days were led by IHRI and Tangerine and included a tour of the Tangerine medical facility and an overview of best practices of clinical care. The final two days of the workshop were facilitated by APTN and shared the Community Based Monitoring (CBM) Tool and Towards Transformative Health Module. 

The CBM training was facilitated by Emily Rowe and went through the Trans COMP Provider Checklist tool as the complementary mechanism to the Trans COMP Scorecard. The objectives of this tool are to assess and take stock of the enabling factors and progress of the clinic/organization towards becoming trans-competent. This activity can be conducted quarterly, or as needed, and be updated with additional checklist items when required. The Tool is divided into two parts: Improving Clinic Experience and Improving Provision of Health Services. Trans-competent health services ensure clear and easy pathways for accessing all types of healthcare, including HIV, gender-affirming, mental health, and general healthcare, regardless of one’s background. Trans-competent care refers to healthcare that demonstrates both trans cultural competency and technical, clinical competency. Trans cultural competency refers to the ability to understand, communicate with, and effectively interact with trans people, in a respectful, non-judgemental, compassionate manner, in settings free of stigma and discrimination. 

Dr. Dela Cruz shared his experience providing healthcare in the Philippines and went through the Toward Transformative Healthcare Module with providers. The TTHM module is specifically tailored to the Asia-Pacific region, recognizing the diverse range of laws, medicine, and resources available. It is designed to provide an introductory resource on trans competent and gender-affirming healthcare for medical professionals and other healthcare workers, particularly those in primary care including community-based health services. In this session, providers were able to ask specific questions to the leading clinician of transgender health and gain more insight about the aspects that went into preparing for a friendly and accepting environment.

APTN, the Asia Pacific Transgender Network, has launched a new module to empower trans individuals to claim their rights and health and to support healthcare professionals in providing gender-affirming healthcare. The “Towards Transformative Healthcare Module (TTHM)” draws on global and regional research and guidance on the health of trans and gender-diverse people, using a rights-based approach to healthcare that departs from pathologizing models towards transformative, community-centered, and culturally sensitive care.

Following each presentation, APTN held a conversation with providers to identify how to further localize the module to the Philippines context and roll out the module to more clinics. The dialogue provided helpful information about the steps that the providers can take to incorporate the recommendations from APTN into their facility. Overall, it was a constructive conversation and following this, we identified next steps to continue making progress. 


By the end of the workshop, participants were equipped with the knowledge and skills needed to train their colleagues and peers. Together, they continued to make a difference in transgender health, creating a more inclusive and compassionate healthcare system.