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VA Puget Sound earns “LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality High Performer” designation

Healthcare Equity Index 2024

Today, VA Puget Sound Health Care System received its “LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality High Performer” designation from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation.

The designation was awarded in the 16th iteration of HRC’s Healthcare Equality Index (HEI), released today. Of the record 1,065 health care facilities that participated, only 462 received the designation.

“Earning the LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality High Performer designation further demonstrates our commitment to creating a welcoming environment and improving health care for everyone, including LGBTQ+ Veterans,” said VA Puget Sound Health Care System Executive Director Dr. Thomas Bundt. “Our staff across Western Washington are here to ensure our LGBTQ+ Veterans receive safe, equitable, affirmative care so they can live their most healthy lives.”

The HEI is national benchmarking tool to evaluate health care facilities’ policies and practices related to equity and inclusion. The survey looked at areas such as LGBTQ+ patient services and support, training patient-centered care, and the provision of transgender health care benefits for staff—areas VA Puget Sound was 100 percent compliant in.

“The Healthcare Equality Index is helping people find facilities where welcoming policies and practices are the standard,” said Kelley Robinson, President of the Human Rights Campaign.

VA Puget Sound is dedicated to being a leader in health care for LGBTQ+ Veterans. Comprehensive care ranges from gender affirming hormone therapy and prosthetics to military sexual trauma screening and treatment, to infertility and pre-exposure prophylaxis HIV prevention services. VA Puget Sound also has a Gender Diversity Clinic (within the Seattle Campus Endocrinology Clinic) for gender affirming care and LGBTQ+ support groups through its Mental Health Services.

Veterans seeking LGBTQ+ care can reach out to VA Puget Sound’s LGBTQ+ Veteran Care Coordinator and Registered Nurse Bridget Reposa (206-277-3233, extension 63233). LGBTQ+ Veteran care coordinators help create a safe, welcoming environment and are focused on reducing barriers to LGBTQ+ Veteran care. These coordinators can also help Veterans add their gender identity, sexual orientation, and chosen name to their VA health record.

About VA Puget Sound:

VA Puget Sound provides comprehensive care to more than 155,000 enrolled Veterans across Western Washington with a primary care team at one of its care sites: two main campuses (American Lake and Seattle), seven outpatient clinics (Edmonds, Everett, Mount Vernon, Olympia, Port Angeles, Puyallup and Silverdale) and two Community Resource & Referral Centers (Georgetown in Seattle and Renton). As the VA’s 4th largest research program, VA Puget Sound has research in virtually every major clinical department, including: TBI and multiple blast exposures; memory improvement and Alzheimer's Disease; PTSD and deployment health; Parkinson’s Disease; diabetes; cancer; substance abuse; lower limb prosthetics; genomics; and Health Services. Additionally, it has seven nationally recognized Centers of Excellence (in areas from limb-loss prevention and prosthetic engineering to primary care education and substance abuse treatment). For more information visit or call 800-329-8387. For Veterans in Crisis, please use the Veterans Crisis line at 988 (press 1).

About Human Rights Campaign Foundation:

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of the Human Rights Campaign America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) people. Through its programs, the HRC Foundation seeks to make transformational change in the everyday lives of LGBTQ+ people, shedding light on inequity and deepening the public’s understanding of LGBTQ+ issues, with a clear focus on advancing transgender and racial justice. Its work has transformed the landscape for more than 15 million workers, 11 million students, 1 million clients in the adoption and foster care system and so much more. The HRC Foundation provides direct consultation and technical assistance to institutions and communities, driving the advancement of inclusive policies and practices; it builds the capacity of future leaders and allies through fellowship and training programs; and, with the firm belief that we are stronger working together, it forges partnerships with advocates in the U.S. and around the globe to increase our impact and shape the future of our work.