Northwell named a leader in LGBTQ+ health care

Northwell Health has been recognized as a national leader in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) inclusiveness by the 2022 Healthcare Equality Index (HEI).

Twenty-five Northwell facilities earned Equity Leader status, which is based on the health system’s policies and practices dedicated to the equitable treatment and inclusion of LGBTQ+ patients, staff and visitors. Less than 500 facilities nationwide earned the Equity Leader distinction on the 15th annual survey.

This is Northwell’s eighth appearance on the HEI survey, which is compiled by the Human Rights Campaign, a nonprofit which strives to end LGBTQ+ discrimination. Northwell grew from eight locations recognized in 2014, its first year on the list, to 25 leadership awards this year.

“At Northwell Health we continue to expand our culture of care where we are build trust and partnerships with our patients and are dedicated to providing culturally sensitive, respectful and humanistic care to all of our communities,” said Jennifer  H Mieres, MD, chief diversity and inclusion officer and senior vice president of the health system’s Center for Equity of Care. “We offer personalized, compassionate health care to each and every person inclusive of members of our community who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer. It is a great privilege – and a great responsibility – as we continue our journey in re-igniting the human connection as a pathway to advancing diversity, inclusion, and health equity. We are honored to be recognized by the HRC Healthcare Equality Index for the past eight years.”

Twenty Northwell hospitals received perfect scores: Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park, Glen Cove Hospital, Huntington Hospital, Mather Hospital in Port Jefferson, Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan, Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New Hyde Park, LIJ Forest Hills, LIJ Valley Stream, Manhattan Eye Ear and Throat, North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, Northern Westchester Hospital in Mt. Kisco, Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead, Phelps Hospital in Sleepy Hollow, Plainview Hospital, South Shore University Hospital in Bay Shore, South Oaks Hospital in Amityville, Staten Island University Hospital (North and South campuses), Syosset Hospital, Zucker Hillside Hospital in New Hyde Park.

In addition, the Center for Transgender Care in Great Neck, Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research in Manhasset, Lenox Health Greenwich Village, Orzac Center for Rehabilitation and Stern Family for Rehabilitation each earned the designation. Northwell Health-GoHealth Urgent Care, whichj operates more than 50 locations in the New York Metro area, earned top performer status.

“At Northwell Health, we are pursuing health equity, which includes high-quality, culturally-competent care and services for our communities,” said Edward Fraser, vice president of Community Relations and chair of Northwell’s EXPRESSIONS BERG, which serves as a resource to enhance workforce engagement and promote LGBTQ+ awareness. “Since 2014, Northwell has retained leadership status with the Healthcare Equality Index survey. This could not have been possible without involving our LGBTQIA+ Employee Resource Group, EXPRESSIONS, composed of 500-plus interdisciplinary team members throughout our organization. This past year, EXPRESSIONS was able to help complete over 2,000 hours of LGBTQIA+ health education, a component to this leadership designation.”

HEI examines four key criteria: Foundational policies and training, LGBTQ+ patient services and support, employee benefits and policies, and patient and community engagement. More than 900 facilities participated in the latest survey.

Another area of focus is LGBTQ+ education (50-hour minimum each year): Mather Hospital in Port Jefferson, Staten Island University Hospital’s north campus and South Oaks Hospital in Amityville each completed more than 200 hours.

To see the complete HEI report, go to: https://www.hrc.org/resources/healthcare-equality-index

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