FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 11, 2013
SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY, July 11, 2013 — Saratoga Hospital has been recognized as a “Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality” in the Healthcare Equality Index 2013. The hospital is one of just 23 healthcare organizations in New York State to earn this distinction for demonstrating a commitment to equitable, inclusive care for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered patients and their families.
Now in its sixth year, the HEI is an annual survey administered by the Human Rights Campaign, the largest civil rights organization working to achieve equal rights for LGBT Americans. HRC released the survey results today during a news conference at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs in Washington, D.C.
Nationwide, only 464 healthcare organizations earned the perfect score required to be named a Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality. Organizations were evaluated on the following criteria: non-discrimination policies for LGBT patients and employees, a guarantee of equal visitation for same-sex partners and parents, and LGBT health education for key staff members.
“This leadership designation affirms our commitment to meet the needs of all patients,” said Angelo Calbone, Saratoga Hospital president and CEO. “It sends a clear message to members of the LGBT community that, at every Saratoga Hospital facility, they can count on us for the care, respect and compassion that all patients deserve, regardless of sexual orientation.”
Mary Jo LaPosta, PhD, RN, senior vice president, patient care and organizational excellence, led the effort to earn the HRC designation, including the review of Saratoga Hospital policies and practices. The review determined that the hospital already had equitable policies in place for LGBT employees, patients and their families.
“This application process provided Saratoga Hospital with an opportunity for self-reflection. The process assisted us in identifying opportunities to enhance our services to the LGBT community,” LaPosta said. “We recognize that LGBT patients still face barriers to equal access to quality healthcare and we are determined to do everything possible to remove those barriers now and in the future.”
Shane Snowdon, HRC Health & Aging director, congratulated and commended Saratoga Hospital and other organizations that earned a place on the HEI 2013. “LGBT patients deeply appreciate the welcoming environment provided by a Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality,” she said. “It makes a big difference to know that your local healthcare facility is fully committed to giving you the same care it gives your neighbors and co-workers.”
For more information about the Healthcare Equality Index 2013, or to download a free copy of the report, visit www.hrc.org/hei.
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