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You're standing in front of your Family and Friends prepared to make your dreams of a lifetime come true. It's at that moment that you are grateful that you have a professional guiding your ceremony. The Supreme Court has finally ruled upon this issue. Now is the time to plan your perfect LGBT Wedding. I have been performing Commitment Ceremonies since the beginning, and I am so pleased this has opened up for everyone to marry the one they Love. Contact Reverend Jacqui Weiks, Your LGBT Wedding Officiant
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Healthy People 2020: Improved LGBT Health
The Obama administration’s latest innovations in healthcare have the potential to change treatment for the LGBT community, with several forward-facing innovations that will help ensure that the unique health needs of the LGBT community are at the forefront of care. These innovations are great news for the LGBT community, making huge strides to eliminate the disparities in care that have plagued the LGBT community.
Obama administration’s latest healthcare innovations will improve treatment & #LGBThealth. Click To Tweet
While the Healthy People 2020 blueprint isn’t solely concerned with the well-being of the LGBT community, it does contain several reforms that will have an important impact on the treatment of the LGBT community. It’s worth noting that it’s one of the first comprehensive plans for public health that contains specific provisions for the LGBT community, indicating that there has been a major shift in the treatment of LGBT health in the past few years, along with wider medical knowledge about the health concerns of LGBT Americans.
Healthy People 2020: the Big Picture
The Healthy People 2020 initiative is a huge undertaking, and a comprehensive plan for improving the health of Americans in the next decade. The blueprint contains many topics and areas of focus, including genomics, public health infrastructure, and dementia, that will shape healthcare in the next decade. While many of these topics have been addressed in previous health blueprints, there are many innovative studies that take a bigger-picture look at health and wellness:
- Social Determinants of Health – Health and well-being are closely linked to a person’s social environment, and everything from walkable environments to workplace safety are being studied to determine their impact on overall health.
- Childhood and Adolescent Health – Increasingly, studies have indicated that healthcare in childhood and adolescence can lay the foundation for long-term health and wellness, and Healthy People 2020 focuses on studying the impact of early healthcare over time.
- Global Health – In an increasingly connected world, global health trends like viral outbreaks can have a huge impact on the health of Americans. The Healthy People 2020 blueprint recognizes that global health is both a public safety and security issue.
Healthy People 2020 includes #LGBThealth, a topic new to a national healthcare blueprint. Click To Tweet
Among these big-picture studies of health and wellness in the United States and beyond, the Healthy People 2020 blueprint also contains a topic that has never before appeared in a national health blueprint: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Health. The topic section on LGBT health not only acknowledges the healthcare disparities faced by the LGBT community, but outlines meaningful ways to improve access to care through better information, long-term evaluation, and the development of an LGBT wellness model.
Meaningful Use and Electronic Health Records for LGBT Health
Electronic health records have been a major part of healthcare reform and public health improvement over the past few years, allowing doctors to access previous treatment records so they can have a more comprehensive picture of a patient’s medical history. Unfortunately, these records have not previously given clinicians the ability to note whether a patient is gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender. This can have a huge effect on the quality of care that LGBT patients receive, especially if doctors don’t take their unique circumstances into consideration. Under new regulations, electronic health records may finally begin to work for LGBT patients instead of contributing to their exclusion:
- New Standards – Electronic health records will now be required by the Department of Health and Human services to have the capacity to collect sexual orientation and gender identity information about patients.
- Medical Coding -Additionally, the new regulations on electronic health records will incorporate LGBT-specific medical coding. For example, one new code will inform caregivers that transgender men who retain a cervix should be offered a Pap smear.
- Data Pool – Finally, these records will increase the available pool of data to give researchers and health professionals information on whether LGBT access to health and wellness services is improving, and information on the community’s general health.
Healthy People 2020: Electronic health records will finally include LGBT notations. #LGBThealth Click To Tweet
Electronic health records do have some associated privacy concerns, and for LGBT people, the idea of being out to your doctor can be a little imposing, but the implementation of LGBT-specific coding and information into health records is a huge leap forward for improving access and ensuring that LGBT patients are receiving the best possible treatment.
LGBT Health Beyond 2020
Healthy People 2020 is just a blueprint, but it does point to many of the health concerns that will continue to affect the LGBT community: concerns about aging, managing chronic disease, and promoting preventive health all should be discussed and evaluated to ensure that treatments consider the lives and situations of LGBT patients. The disparities are not going to disappear overnight, but improving access to health resources and giving health providers better information will go a long way toward ensuring the health of the LGBT community.