Ochsner joins only 418 healthcare providers nationwide to earn this designation

Seven Ochsner facilities have earned the “LGBTQ Healthcare Equality Leader” designation from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. The Human Rights Campaign Foundation (HRC), the educational arm of the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) civil rights organization released its 11th edition of the Healthcare Equality Index (HEI).

A record 626 healthcare facilities actively participated in the HEI 2018 survey, with HRC Foundation proactively researching key policies at more than 900 additional non-participating hospitals. Of those included in the HEI, 418 earned a “LGBTQ Healthcare Equality Leader” designation. Nine facilities in Louisiana were recognized in the 2018 survey with seven being Ochsner facilities rated as "Top Performers,” including:

•Ochsner Baptist

•Ochsner Medical Center -- Baton Rouge

•Ochsner Medical Center -- Jefferson Highway

•Ochsner Medical Center -- Kenner

•Ochsner Medical Center -- North Shore

•Ochsner St. Anne

•Ochsner Medical Center -- West Bank Campus

“I am proud to be part of a system that not only embraces LGBTQ healthcare, but actively promotes the advancement of compassionate and high-quality care for all patients,” said Dr. Samuel Danna, Vice President, Ochsner Pride-LGBTQ Resource Group. “Our designation as an HEI leader also demonstrates the system’s commitment to fostering a collaborative and welcoming environment for underrepresented groups.”

The 11th edition of the HEI marks the second year that participants are given a numerical score based on their LGBTQ-inclusive policies and practices. HEI participants are given scores in four criteria:

•Foundational elements of LGBTQ patient-centered care

•LGBTQ Patient Services and Support

•Employee Benefits and Policies

•LGBTQ Patient and Community Engagement

Participants that receive the maximum score in each section earn the coveted status of “2018 LGBTQ Healthcare Equality Leader.”

In the 2018 report, an impressive 418 facilities earned HRC’s “LGBTQ Healthcare Equality Leader” designation with a score of 100. Another 95 facilities earned the “Top Performer” designation for scoring from 80 to 95 points. With 82 percent of participating facilities scoring 80 points or more, healthcare facilities are going beyond the basics when it comes to adopting policies and practices in LGBTQ care.

Of the hospitals who did not participate in the HEI but were scored based on research, only 63 percent have patient non-discrimination policies that include both “sexual orientation” and “gender identity,” and only 53 percent were found to have an LGBTQ-inclusive employment non-discrimination policy. The equal visitation policy, at 93 percent, is the only one that comes close to matching the rate of the participating facilities.

For more information or to schedule an appointment with an Ochsner practitioner, call 225-761-5200 or visit www.Ochsner.org/info to schedule online.

Contributed by Ochsner Baton Rouge