In recognition of LGBT Health Awareness Week, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is emphasizing its ongoing efforts to address the specific health concerns of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Americans, especially through implementation of the Affordable Care Act. Such efforts include incorporating data collection on LGBT populations into national health surveys, releasing rules requiring hospitals to allow same-sex partners the ability to visit each other in the hospital, and setting up an internal working group to ensure the agency is effectively coordinating policies to best address LGBT health needs.
In addition, HHS outlines several recommendations for future action. For example, the agency is planning to add information to HealthCare.gov that is of specific relevance to LGBT populations. In particular, the Web site will allow LGBT consumers to identify health insurance policies available to them that include coverage of domestic partners. HHS also will conduct outreach to organizations that serve LGBT communities to make them aware of available funding opportunities and highlight programs that may particularly benefit LGBT populations.
More information and resources on some of the health issues and inequities affecting LGBT communities can be found on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Web site. Some of this information is designed for members of the general public. Other information has been developed for health care providers, public health professionals, and public health students.
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