June 19, 2012

Multnomah County's Health Department has been recognized as a "Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality" in the 2012 Healthcare Equality Index report, an annual survey conducted by the Human Rights Campaign. This is the second time in as many years that Multnomah County has earned this recognition.

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) is the country's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) organization. The Multnomah County Health Department earned top marks for its commitment to equitable, inclusive care for LGBT patients and their families, who can face challenges in accessing adequate health care.

All seven of the county’s primary care clinics and the HIV health services center met the nondiscrimination criteria.

"The Multnomah County Health Department is committed to providing quality care to LGBT clients and their families," states Lillian Shirley, Health Department director. "We are honored to receive this recognition and take seriously our pledge to provide person-centered, high-quality care to all members of our community."

Multnomah County's Health Department was among 234 healthcare facilities nationwide to be named “Leaders in LGBT Healthcare Equality.” Facilities awarded this title meet several key indicators for equitable care, including nondiscrimination policies for LGBT patients and employees, a guarantee of equal visitation for same-sex partners and parents, and LGBT health education for key staff.

Multnomah County was congratulated by HRC Family Project Director Ellen Kahn.

“LGBT patients deeply appreciate the welcoming environment provided by a Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality,” Kahn said. “It makes a big difference to know that your local healthcare facility is fully committed to giving you the same care it gives your neighbors and co-workers.”

For more information about the Healthcare Equality Index 2012, or to download a free copy of the report, visit www.hrc.org/hei.