Participation in the Healthcare Equality Index “skyrocketed” this year, according to the Human Rights Campaign, which has conducted the online survey annually since 2007.
There were 309 respondents representing 718 facilities this year, up from 122 respondents last year, and this marked the first time that all 50 states were represented, HRC said. It noted that nearly 80 percent of the medical centers in the Veterans Health Administration participated.
Twelve of the facilities were from Pennsylvania, of which seven were VA centers. None was from Central Pennsylvania.
The survey asks health care organizations whether they meet four criteria HRC considers foundational for LGBT patient-centered care: patient nondiscrimination, equal visitation, employment nondiscrimination, and training in LGBT patient-centered care.
More than half of the facilities responding met all four criteria and were designated leaders in LGBT health care equality, HRC said.
“This report shows that the country’s health care facilities are very much a part of our nation’s movement toward full equity and inclusion for LGBT Americans,” HRC Foundation President Chad Griffin write in the report. “While the geographic reach of the HEI 2013 is impressive, 5 states have only one participating facility and 4 have no Equality Leader, a situation that must change.”