For Immediate Release: December 3, 2015
For the fourth year in a row, AtlantiCare has been recognized as a “Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality” in the Healthcare Equality Index (HEI) report. AtlantiCare earned top marks for its commitment to equitable, inclusive care for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) patients and their families, who can face challenges in accessing adequate healthcare.
The report is the result of an annual survey conducted by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the country’s largest LGBT organization.
This year AtlantiCare focused on maintaining the work it has done for the LGBT community and by starting new projects to support LGBT health education. AtlantiCare was also more visible in the community, participating in and sponsoring numerous presentations and workshops focused on leadership and LGBT health education. These included giving presentations for area schools supporting the development of support groups; educating teachers and coaches; and providing employment information to LGBT high school and college-aged youth who identify as LGBT in the Out4STEM project. AtlantiCare also made and continues to make available free online training as part of its ongoing educational support for professionals and support personnel in the hospital and outpatient settings.
“AtlantiCare’s commitment to inclusive diversity helps us enhance the care we give and the services we provide our community,” said Cydney Savage, LPC, director Adult Outpatient Services, AtlantiCare, and past chair and current member, AtlantiCare PRIDE (Promoting Respect, Individuality, Diversity and Equality) Employee Resource Group. “More importantly, it helps us to earn trust and eliminate disparities in care. We are committed to increasing awareness, knowledge, and understanding of others. Inclusivity engages us in, and positively impacts the work we do.”
AtlantiCare was one of a select group of healthcare facilities nationwide to be named leaders in LGBT Healthcare Equality this year. Facilities awarded this title meet several key indicators for equitable care, including nondiscrimination policies for LGBT patients and employees, a guarantee of equal visitation for same-sex partners and parents, and LGBT health education for staff.
Last year, the HRC Foundation featured AtlantiCare in a guide to accompany the HEI survey. The guide highlighted best practice models for HEI application participants.
AtlantiCare is committed to creating a culture of inclusion and fostering a work environment that values diversity and eliminating health care disparities. AtlantiCare’s Diversity & Disparities Council, which includes physicians, staff and leadership from throughout AtlantiCare, established employee resource groups (ERGs) to support the Council’s mission – to educate staff about the culture; celebrate cultural holidays and events; represent AtlantiCare at cultural events in the community; enhance recruitment efforts; and identify the culture’s top health concerns and developing ideas for addressing these concerns. AtlantiCare ERG groups include African Americans, Asian Pacific Americans, disabled persons, Hispanic Americans, Interfaith Groups, LGBT, Military, and Women.
The Healthcare Equality Index offers healthcare facilities unique and powerful resources designed to help provide equal care to a long-overlooked group of patients, as well as assistance in complying with new regulatory requirements and access to high-quality staff training.
For information about AtlantiCare programs and services, visit www.atlanticare.org or find AtlantiCare on Facebook at www.facebook.com.
For more information about the Healthcare Equality Index 2015, or to download a free copy of the report, visit www.hrc.org/hei.
AtlantiCare is an integrated system of services designed to help people achieve optimal health. It includes AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center, AtlantiCare Health Engagement, the AtlantiCare Foundation, and AtlantiCare Health Services. Its more than 5,221 employees and more than 700 physicians serve the community in nearly 70 locations. A 2009 Malcolm Baldrige Award winner, AtlantiCare was also included in Modern Healthcare’s Best Places to Work in Healthcare in 2010. ARMC became the 105th hospital in the nation to attain status as a Magnet™ designated hospital in March of 2004 and was redesignated a Magnet™ hospital in 2008 and 2013.