The Healthcare Equality Index (HEI) recognizes healthcare facilities that demonstrate equitable treatment and inclusion of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning (LGBTQ) patients, visitors, and employees in the following areas:
- Patient non-discrimination
- Equal visitation
- Employment non-discrimination
- Training in LGBTQ patient centered care
- Patient services and support
- Employee benefits and policies
- Transgender inclusive health insurance
- Patient & community engagement
Healthcare facilities that receive a score of 100 on the benchmarking tool are designated as a "Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality." Facilities with a score of 80 to 95 are designated as a "Top Performer."
In 2019, 58 VA medical centers were designated as a Leader, and 26 were designated as a Top Performer, in LGBT Healthcare Equality.
The Virtual Health Equity Learning Hub is a dedicated space located in the VA Virtual Medical Center (VA-VMC). The VA-VMC is a state of the art virtual VA hospital and online collaborative learning environment for Veterans, VA staff, and stakeholders.
VA Office of Health Equity, in partnership with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Office of Minority Health, is pleased to share the Inclusion of Veterans in Clinical Trials video series featuring racial and ethnic minority Veterans describing the importance of minorities and Veteran participation in clinical trials. Clinical trials are an important type of research that determine whether medical products like medicines, vaccines, or devices are safe and effective. It is very important to make sure that diverse populations are included in clinical trials. This helps researchers find out if different populations respond to treatment differently and to make sure the population who would most likely benefit from the medical product is included in the clinical trial.
Inclusion of Veterans in Clinical Trials – Video 1, Video 2, Podcast
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has launched a series of educational videos and materials to raise awareness about the importance of minorities participating in clinical trials. These videos stress the importance of why diversity is needed to help ensure medical products are safe and effective for everyone.
- Video 1: Shirley’s Story: How to Find Information about Clinical Trials
- Video 2: Shirley’s Story: Getting Access to Cutting Edge Therapies
- Video 3: Shirley’s Story: You Don’t Have to be Sick to Participate
- Video 4: Shirley’s Story: Diversity is Critical to Making Better Medical Products
- Video 5: Shirley’s Story: Diversity is Critical to Making Better Medical Products (LONG)
- Video 6: Dr. Luciana Borio: FDA’s Role in Increasing Clinical Trial Diversity
- Infographic: 4 Ways to Be a #ClinicalTrialsChampion
- Dr. Jonca Bull’s Blog: Be A Champion for Clinical Trial Diversity
- Interview with Cariny Nunez, FDA Public Health Advisor [Spanish] - Part 1 | Part 2
- Latinos Can Make a Difference in Clinical Trials
Did you know that some Veterans, including some racial and ethnic minorities, experience higher rates of hypertension? A VA research team created a series of videos of patients discussing their experiences with high blood pressure and offering tips to take medications, talk to their health care providers, and make other changes. According to the 2016 study, Veterans who watched the videos, compared to those who did not watch the videos, reported greater intentions to:
- Become more physically active;
- Use salt substitutes;
- Talk openly with their doctor about hypertension; and
- Remember to take their hypertension medications.
The Office of Health Equity is pleased to be able to share these videos with Veterans and stakeholders. The short videos below feature stories from Veterans about high blood pressure and important resources.
Module 1 - Journeys with High Blood Pressure
Module 2 - Journeys with High Blood Pressure | Continuing Down the Road