The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) has released their 13th annual Healthcare Equality Index (HEI), a national LGBTQ benchmarking tool that evaluates the polices and practices of healthcare facilities as they relate to equity and inclusion. This year, more than 1,700 facilities nationwide were evaluated.

In the 2020 HEI, a total of 495 facilities received the coveted title of “Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality.” These facilities received a top score of 100, scored in the following areas: non-discrimination and staff training, patient services and support, employee benefits and policies, and patient and community engagement.

193 facilities received the designation of “Top Performer” for receiving scores of 80-95. While no healthcare facilities in Georgia received perfect scores, four were top performers: AbsoluteCARE (95), Augusta University Medical Center (95), Grady Memorial Hospital (85), and VA Carl Vinson Medical Center (85).

Of the record 765 healthcare facilities that actively participated in the survey, 92 percent met the HEI staff training requirements and 90 percent earned a score of 80 or higher. Furthermore, 75 percent have an internal committee focused on LGBTQ patient issues, 53 percent have policies that specifically outline procedures to ensure a welcoming experience for transgender patients, 87 percent collect patient gender identity data, and 90 percent have all gender restrooms or clear signage indicating patients were allowed to use the bathroom aligning with their gender identity.

“The healthcare facilities participating the HRC Foundation’s HEI are not only on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said HRC President Alphonso David, “they are also making 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.”

View the entire 60-page HEI report here.

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