Northwell Health has been recognized as one of the nation’s top health systems – and No. 1 in New York State – by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2020 Healthcare Equality Index (HEI), which measures inclusiveness of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) community at large.
Twenty Northwell Health hospitals – 27 facilities in all – have been designated a Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality, according to newly released findings from the LGBTQ watchdog organization. Just three health systems in the nation have more rated facilities than Northwell. The HEI also acknowledged the additional pressures felt by health systems in 2020 as health care faced a global pandemic and addressed the social justice movement.
“At Northwell Health we have built a culture of care that puts our patients first and are dedicated to providing culturally sensitive, respectful and humanistic care to our diverse communities,” said Dr. Jennifer H Mieres, chief diversity and inclusion officer and senior vice president of the health system’s Center for Equity of Care. “We offer personalized, compassionate health care to each and every person inclusive of members of our community who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer. It is a great privilege – and a great responsibility – as we continue our call to action to re-ignite humanism in health care. We are honored to be recognized by the HRC Healthcare Equality Index for the past seven years.”
The HEI is a national benchmarking tool that evaluates health care facilities by examining patient, visitation and employment policies. The 13th annual survey saw Northwell facilities score high marks from among more than 1,700 facilities nationwide that either actively participated or were independently researched by the HEI.
Twenty Northwell hospitals were honored: Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park, Glen Cove Hospital, Huntington Hospital, Mather Hospital in Port Jefferson, Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan, Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New Hyde Park, LIJ Forest Hills, LIJ Valley Stream, Manhattan Eye Ear and Throat, North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, Northern Westchester Hospital in Mt. Kisco, Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead, Phelps Hospital in Sleepy Hollow, Plainview Hospital, Southside Hospital in Bay Shore, South Oaks Hospital in Amityville, Staten Island University Hospital (North and South campuses), Syosset Hospital, Zucker Hillside Hospital in New Hyde Park. In addition, the Center for Transgender Care in Great Neck, Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research in Manhasset, Lenox Health Greenwich Village, Orzac Center for Rehabilitation and Stern Family for Rehabilitation each earned the designation.
“Northwell is committed to ensuring the health and wellness of all of our patients and communities served,” said Michael Wright, vice president for Diversity and Health Equity at Northwell. “We provide a welcoming and inclusive environment for our LGBTQIA+ community. We are delighted to be partnering with LGBTQIA+ organizations and communities on our journey to health equity.”
Northwell’s commitment to the LGBTQIA+ community focuses on respect and inclusion such as asking for proper pronoun identification as part of the health care record and offering a host of services highlighted by the Gerald J. Friedman Transgender Health and Wellness Program at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan, the Northwell Health Center for Transgender Care and employment and career development services at Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, Queens. The Northwell Health Physician Partners LGBTQ Transgender Health Program in New Hyde Park opened in June.
“This is an esteemed honor for our health system to not only continue to participate, but to receive the designation as a national LGBTQ leader by the Healthcare Equality Index,” said Edward Fraser, vice president of Community Relations at Northwell. “We stayed focused to maintain our Leadership status and add on new sites through the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure that Northwell’s commitment to the LGBTQIA+ community continues to grow.”
For more information about the HEI, go to: https://hrc-prod-requests.s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/resources/HEI-2020-FinalReport.pdf