All Baptist Health hospitals, including Wolfson Children’s Hospital, received the “LGBTQ Health Care Equality Leader” status for the first time, demonstrating the health system’s continued commitment to fostering an environment that prioritizes inclusion for team members, patients and families.
The designation was awarded by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation (HRC) in its annual Healthcare Equality Index (HEI) survey. The HRC is the education arm of America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people.
The HEI is the national LGBTQ benchmarking tool that evaluates hospitals and health care facilities on policies and best practices in LGBTQ patient-centered care in four key areas:
- Non-discrimination and staff training
- Patient services and support
- Employee benefits and practices
- Patient and community engagement
HRC’s “LGBTQ Health Care Equality Leader” is designated to hospitals that receive the maximum score in all four categories, earning an overall score of 100.
“LGBT+ patients continue to face significant challenges in health care. While we have achieved top scores from HRC, we know there is always room to improve in health care equity,” said Brett McClung, FACHE, president and CEO of Baptist Health. “At the same time, we are incredibly proud of the progress made possible by our team members who are leading this important work in our organization.”
For the past three years, Baptist Health hospitals were designated “Top Performers.” In just the past year, Baptist Health has implemented new policies and practices to lead the way in the Jacksonville community for inclusion. These changes include, but are not limited to:
- Ongoing training in LGBT+ competency implemented for team members in annual education and all incoming nurse residents
- Internal task force created to address collection of sexual orientation and gender identity in the medical record
- Commitment to inclusive language used in patient materials
- Behavioral Health providers with an expertise in LGBT+ care identified and available by request
- Peer-to-peer LGBT+ support groups provided to Baptist Health team members, physicians and the community
“The health care facilities participating in the HRC’s Healthcare Equality Index … make it clear from their participation in the HEI that they stand on the side of fairness and are committed to providing inclusive care to their LGBTQ patients,” said Alphonso David, president of the HRC.
Learn more about LGBT+ Care and Resources at Baptist Health.