Did you know that LGBTQ Health Awareness Week is this week, 3/24-3/28? Not only is it a great week to celebrate the health and safety of all members in our community, but a chance for all to understand a little more about what it means to identify as LGBTQ!

lgbtqa health

The Breakdown.

Do you know the LGBTQ acronym? Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer. In short, it is important to understand that although each within the community is an individual with specific needs and health concerns, all are united to promote gender equality and civil rights. You may be wondering how you are affected if you do not fit into one of these categories. Ever heard of the other acronym, LGBTQA? The ‘A’ stands for Ally and these people serve an important and equal part in the LGBTQ community by supporting and advocating for rights, as well as creating a safe space in personal and professional settings.

Know the terminology: http://www.lgbt.ucla.edu/documents/LGBTTerminology.pdf

Understanding Access to Health Care.
Think access to health care and a friendly provider is the same for everyone? Think again. The reality is that LGBT individuals face more health disparity than other identities caused by society and its relentless discrimination against basic freedom, i.e. human rights! According to the Healthy People 2020 Initiative for “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Health,” there is a significant discrepancy in the number of medical staff trained who are culturally competent in delivering health care essential to this crucial population in the U.S. What this means is that it has become typical in society to not just deny or give inadequate care to LGBT individuals due to personal bias, but there is not enough preparation and certification for LGBT care when becoming a medical professional!
More info: http://www.healthypeople.gov/2020/topicsobjectives2020/overview.aspx?topicid=25
Watch this video to see how New York City Health and Hospitals initiated employee training to correctly serve LGBT New Yorkers!

Come together!
Let’s start talking–spread the word! There are so many issues related to LGBTQ Health Awareness; this is a week to recognize the beauty and construct of it. Education is power so stand up for what you believe in. Inspired to do something here on West Chester University’s campus? Consider attending LGBTQA’s meeting Mondays from 4:30-5:30pm in Sykes 252 on Queer Wellness. Remember to check out Facebook pages @ WCU’s LGBTQA and WCU Wellness Education for more information.

Written by Jordan Buckley, Peer Educator