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What was your reaction to the discussion?

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Initially, I didn’t think that there was a real issue other than just treating people equally and as human beings. Your sexual orientation should not have an effect on how good the medical care that you receive. But as I listened to the issues that they discussed, I realized that these issues are just as important as issues that someone else may have who falls into a culture other than what is considered the norm. It is difficult to open up and feel comfortable when you identify with a culture that is not popular or people tend to look down on because they do not understand. Do you think that the individuals presented legitimate concerns about the healthcare delivery system? I do think that they presented legitimate concerns. Because the LGBT culture is ever growing, the healthcare system have to be sensitive to the needs of this culture. As well as it could help them provide better care for the patients involved.

For example, the individual that was a man that is married , but identify with lesbian, It is important for providers to know this information so they don’t assume they are fully woman and treat them as such. Also, another issue was most forms don’t allow for wife and wife or husband and husband or partner. The healthcare system doesn’t allow partners to make end of life care decisions for their partner that they have been with for years, but they should inform patients of appropriate steps to take so they could be involved in the decision making of their care.

Considering the data presented in Health Care Equality Index (HCEI), do you think we are making progress in creating a healthcare environment that welcomes the LGBT population? If so, is it being done quickly enough? I think the healthcare system is making progress in creating a more accepting environment for the LGBT community, such as the new standards put in place by the Joint Commission that prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation, or the LGBT training that is received in the facilities that participate in the HEI Core Four(Healthcare Equality Index [HEI], 2012, sec 1, sec 4). Although a lot of progress has been made to triumph the discrimination that they receive, if even one person is still being discriminated against in 2014, I believe that its not quickly enough. What are the barriers to change that remain and must be overcome in creating a more inclusive healthcare delivery system? What suggestions do you have regarding steps that might be taken to make this happen?

Some of the barriers that still remain are communication in the sense of feeling comfortable enough to open up to your healthcare providers and know that you will not be looked down on or disrespected, or the healthcare provider asking before assuming that you fall into one particular category. Also, the systems in place do not allow for the different ways of family identifications that are accepted by those in the LGBT culture to permit their significant other to be involved in the decisions made about their loved ones care. It needs to be mandated that all states healthcare systems be trained on these issues and be required to accept these patients with no discrimination. Regardless of how they decide to identify themselves, they are still human beings. Healthcare Equality Index. (2012). Promoting equitable and inclusive care for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender patients and their families.

Retrieved from http://www.hrc.org/files/assets/resourcs/Healthcare-Equality-Index-2012.pdf

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