Admission, registration, and all other patient forms should provide options that are inclusive of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) patients, says a new field guide from the Joint Commission that urges US hospitals to create a more welcoming, safe, and inclusive environment that contributes to improved health care quality for LGBT patients and their families.
Advancing Effective Communication, Cultural Competence, and Patient- and Family Centered Care for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Community features a compilation of strategies, practice examples, resources, and testimonials designed to help hospitals in their efforts to improve communication and provide more patient-centered care to their LGBT patients. According to the guide, using neutral and inclusive language when talking with patients will pave the way for more effective patient-provider communication and can make patients more comfortable with disclosing information relevant to their care. For example, health care providers should be aware of language or questions that assume heterosexuality, such as asking if the patient is married or making references to husbands or wives.
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