Friday, April 6, 2012

‘Come Out for Health’


RAISING AWARENESS: Members of the MGH LGBT Employee Resource Group


According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community are at increased risk for certain health issues compared with their heterosexual counterparts. These disparities are not necessarily linked to differences in sexual behavior and may be the result of factors such as the stigma LGBT individuals sometimes face. To increase awareness about the unique health concerns of LGBT patients, the MGH LGBT Employee Resource Group hosted a series of events in honor of National LGBT Health Awareness Week March 26 through 30. The theme for the week was “Come Out for Health.”

Members of the resource group staffed a table March 27 in the White Corridor to provide a one-stop shop for LGBT patients and their loved ones. Resources also were available for caregivers, including reference cards with examples of disparities in LGBT health care; clear definitions related to gender and sexuality; tips to ensure LGBT patients feel safe, comfortable and respected, for example, by using gender-neutral language; and online resources for additional information.

Other awareness events included a screening of “Beginners,” a film about a young man whose elderly father reveals he is gay, and a social outing to Club Café. Additional activities are planned for Boston Pride
Week June 3 through 12. For more information about the LGBT Employee Resource Group or to obtain resources about caring for LGBT patients, email

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