Samaritan, Oregon Hospitals Rank High for LGBTQ+ Policies

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s annual Healthcare Equality Index recently ranked U.S. hospitals for their policies and practices to protect LGBTQ+ patients and employees. In Oregon, all but one of 16 hospitals surveyed performed above the threshold.

Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center in Corvallis was not ranked as a participating hospital in the survey, but it was researched and fulfilled all three of the foundational policies of inclusion. It was judged on three criteria: non-discriminatory patient practices, freedom to include same-sex partners in visitation, and employment nondiscrimination. According to the Human Rights Campaign, “In Lambda Legal’s landmark study, When Health Care Isn’t Caring, 73% of transgender respondents and 29% of lesbian, gay, and bisexual respondents reported that they believed they would be treated differently by medical personnel because of their LGBTQ+ status. Equally disturbing, 52% of transgender respondents and 9% of lesbian, gay and bisexual respondents reported that they believed they would be refused medical services because of their LGBTQ+ status.”

The questions on their survey assessed the inclusivity of the facility’s LGBTQ+ policies as well as how the facility shares those policies with their community, patients, and staff.

Hospitals that were ranked also were assessed according to criteria such as patient self-identification, transgender patient services and support, employee benefits and policies, and patient and community engagement.

The Healthcare Equality Index reports come out every other year. The next survey will be in 2023, with results being released in 2024.

The closest organization in the Willamette Valley with an index ranking is Legacy Silverton Medical Center, which scored a perfect 100 and an “Equality Leader” standing.

By Peggy Perdue

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