The organization has been on a path to improving the health care experience for patients that identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer. These patients face unique challenges when managing basic health care needs.
“This score is a testament to the many years of work in advancing LGBTQ+ health at Michigan Medicine,” said Pedro Coracides, project manager in the Office of Patient Experience. “It serves as a proud moment in our journey to become a leader in meeting the needs of this community as they seek safe and equitable care.”
HEI scores are based on four main categories: non-discrimination and staff training, patient services and support, employee benefits and policies, and patient and community engagement.
David Miller, M.D., M.P.H., president of U-M Health, emphasized the importance of improving LBGTQ+ health care delivery. “Access and Experience are fundamental components of our strategic priorities to Build our BASE (Belonging, Access, Safety, Experience). We want all of our patients, including those in the LGBTQ+ communities, to receive equitable care and have the best possible experience at U-M Health.”
Since 2018, Michigan Medicine has been on the road to improving the experience for LGBTQ+ patients, faculty and staff, with efforts like the establishment of the Advisory Committee for the Advancement of LGBTQ+ Health at Michigan Medicine (ACALHM). The committee aims to create enduring and affirming spaces to promote the health and well-being of patients, families, learners, staff, faculty and visitors of all sexual orientations, gender identities and gender expressions.?
The committee has taken the lead on:
- Developing the LGBTQ+ Inclusive Language module that is available on https://ohei.med.umich.edu/professional-development#lgbtqia-awareness-inclusion and promoting the Human Rights Commission online training options https://www.dropbox.com/s/srw6y20493fl5aw/LGBTQ%20Training%20Resources%20CAL.pdf?dl=0.
- Creating a patient facing site focus on LGBTQ+ patient needs. The site hosts the growing LGBTQ+ affirming provider list, which was frequently requested by patients.
- Adding sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) questions to patient satisfaction surveys.
- Creating more inclusive forms (e.g., updated birth certificate worksheet form in Mott to use “parent” instead of “mother/father”).
- Patient and community engagement, such as participation and sponsorship of Ann Arbor Pride event and rainbow lanyards and pronoun pins for staff.
“I’m proud of the work done by The Advisory Committee for the Advancement of LGBTQ Health at Michigan Medicine and many others to make Michigan Medicine a more inclusive place to work, learn and heal,” said David Brown, M.D., associate dean for health equity and inclusion. “This LGBTQ+ work drives our mission, advances our healthcare equity priorities, and aligns with our core values of caring, inclusion and belonging, integrity, teamwork and innovation.”
U-M has implemented policies and benefits to support LGBTQ+ faculty and staff, including gender affirming coverage.
“This could not have been possible without all the hard work and dedication of many throughout Michigan Medicine,” said Keith Gran, chief patient experience officer. “Although we scored 100, this does not mean our work to improve health care for LGBTQ+ patients is finished. We have many initiatives still ongoing throughout the health system to ensure our LGBTQ+ community has the best experience possible.”