UW Medicine named Leader in Healthcare Equality

​Annual survey identifies ways hospitals offer support and equity to LGBT patients, visitors and staff

Seattle — All four UW Medicine hospitals have been recognized as 2016 Leaders in LGBT Healthcare Equality and included in the Healthcare Equality Index 2016, a unique annual survey that encourages equal care for LGBT Americans by evaluating inclusive policies and practices related to LGBT patients, visitors and employees. The Index is published by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the country's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization. 

The four UW Medicine hospitals named are Harborview Medical Center, Northwest Hospital and Medical Center, UW Medical Center and Valley Medical Center. This year, the only Leaders in LGBT Healthcare Equality in the Seattle area are UW Medicine's hospitals and its affiliates, Seattle Children's Hospital and Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. Only two other Washington state facilities were named to the list, one in Yakima and one in Port Townsend.

"UW Medicine is proud to support and serve LGBT patients and their families, and to serve as an employer for LGBT individuals," said Cindy Hecker, interim chief health systems officer for UW Medicine. "Our goal is always for LGBT patients, families and staff to feel they are treated with the equity and respect they deserve, and through the work of our LGBT advisory committees we are continually identifying new ways to reach this goal."

Facilities awarded the Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality title must met key criteria, including patient and employee non-discrimination policies that specifically mention sexual orientation and gender identity, a guarantee of equal visitation for same-sex partners and parents, and LGBT health education for key staff members.

A total of 496 healthcare facilities nationwide were named 2016 Leaders in LGBT Healthcare Equality.

For more information about the Healthcare Equality Index 2016, or to download a free copy of the report, visit www.hrc.org/hei.

Media contact:

McKenna Princing

UW Medicine / Strategic Marketing & Communications

206.221.9394 / mckennap@uw.edu