On March 29, Huntsman Mental Health Institute (HMHI) was designated an “LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality Leader” in the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation's 15th-anniversary edition of the Healthcare Equality Index (HEI).
This designation stems from the nation's foremost benchmarking survey of healthcare facilities on policies and practices dedicated to the equitable treatment and inclusion of their LGBTQ+ patients, visitors, and employees. Among the 906 health care facilities that participated, 496 earned the LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality Leader designation. To be designated a leader, you must receive a maximum score in each section.
- foundational policies and training in LGBTQ+ patient-centered care,
- LGBTQ+ patient services and support
- employee benefits and policies, and
- patient and community engagement.
“This recognition as a leader by the HEI is something we should all celebrate,” says Mark H. Rapaport, CEO of HMHI. “Every person deserves to have access to quality mental health care, be respected and heard by their clinician, and feel safe in the facility where they receive care and treatment. I am proud that our trainees, clinicians, faculty, staff, and everyone at HMHI uphold our core value of universal acceptance and ensure everyone receives the highest quality of mental health care.”
LGBTQ+ people are often subject to discrimination in all spaces, including healthcare facilities, which leads to community members avoiding care and anticipating their voices will not be respected in an incredibly vulnerable environment. The Healthcare Equality Index strives to ensure LGBTQ+ people are protected and affirmed by their healthcare providers and feel safe seeking services.
“It is fantastic that HMHI is designated as an LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality Leader within the nation and especially in our community,” says Varsha Iyer, MD. “Our institution serves a diverse population, and one of our primary goals is to bring appropriate care to all groups. Quality healthcare access and a safe treatment environment are important for our LGBTQ+ community members who may have experienced discrimination in various environments, including healthcare. I am proud to work for an institution dedicated to constantly improving equity, diversity, and inclusion for our patients and their families.”
University of Utah Hospital, Craig H. Neilsen Rehabilitation Hospital, University Orthopedic Center, and Huntsman Cancer Institute also earned the HEI designation.
Learn more about our commitment to inclusive, quality health care across the entire University of Utah Health system.