Christiana Hospital and Wilmington Hospital have earned 2017 Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality designation, receiving a perfect score on the national Healthcare Equality Index from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, the educational branch of the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization. It is the sixth consecutive year Christiana Care’s hospitals have received the honor.
“We are honored by this designation, and it is our privilege to promote an inclusive environment for our patients, their loved ones and our colleagues,” said Janice E. Nevin, M.D., MPH, Christiana Care’s president and chief executive officer. “This designation is reflective of our promise to our patients and families to be respectful, caring partners in their health.”
For 2017, the 10th edition of the Healthcare Equality Index implemented new criteria that raised the bar on what it takes to earn the Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality designation.
“We are proud of the extensive effort Christiana Care puts forth to receive this designation,” said Bettina Tweardy Riveros, chief health equity officer at Christiana Care. “Our organization continues to raise the bar in our efforts and is pleased to have earned this recognition.”
For the first time, Healthcare Equality Index participants were given scores in four criteria that represent how many policies and best practices from each section they have implemented:
- Foundational elements of LGBTQ patient-centered care.
- LGBTQ patient services and support.
- Employee benefits and policies.
- LGBTQ patient and community engagement.
Participants receiving the maximum score in each section for a total score of 100 points earn the coveted status of 2017 Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality.
“Christiana Care has been a pioneer in LGBTQ health equality,” said Timothy Rodden, MDiv, MA, BCC, FACHE, director of Pastoral Services and system coordinator for LGBTQ health initiatives. “We strive to grow our programs and resources to meet the health needs for LGBTQ Delawareans and to partner with others in the state.”
Among the achievements that helped earn 2017 Leader status:
- Christiana Care provides transgender health benefits to employees and their dependents. Christiana Care is the only health system in Delaware to do so.
- Christiana Care’s LGBTQ Health Initiatives webpage helps the LGBTQ community to readily find information about LGBTQ services at Christiana Care and in the community, and to locate LGBTQ-friendly health care providers, as well as other useful resources.
- A “Transgender Care Guidelines and Resources” best practice tips and guidelines document was created to help clinicians, providers and other staff to provide respectful care to transgender patients and their families.
- Christiana Care produced an “It Gets Better” video as a community outreach tool to help prevent suicide for at-risk LGBTQ adolescents and young adults.
In 2015, Christiana Care formed an LGBTQ Patient-Family Advisory Group that includes people from the community and employees. These advisers help Christiana Care identify unmet needs and work to continually improve quality and provide relevant services.