City of Hope named “Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality” by Human Rights Campaign Foundation

June 28, 2017
The elite nationwide designation reflects a perfect score, outstanding LGBTQ patient-centered care
Letisia Marquez
[email protected]

DUARTE, Calif. — City of Hope, a world-renowned independent research and cancer and diabetes treatment center, today announced it has received the “Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality” designation from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation (HRC), the educational arm of the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) civil rights organization.

City of Hope’s designation was reported in the 10th edition of the Healthcare Equality Index (HEI), reflecting on a decade of progress in LGBTQ health care. A record 590 health care facilities actively participated in the HEI 2017 survey. In addition to active survey participants, the HRC Foundation proactively researched key policies at more than 900 nonparticipating hospitals. Of all those included in the HEI survey, 302 earned a “Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality” designation.

“All of us at City of Hope pride ourselves in providing compassionate care to each and every patient who turns to us for the latest research and treatment in cancer, diabetes and other life-threatening diseases,” said Kety Duron, City of Hope’s chief human resources and diversity officer. “The ‘Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality’ designation is a testament to the enduring legacy of patient-centered care that is at the heart of our mission at City of Hope.”

City of Hope patients Rob Kipper and his husband, Craig Prater, who is being monitored for prostate cancer because of a family history of the disease, experienced that firsthand. Kipper came to City of Hope in 2005 with Stage 4 T cell lymphoma and eventually received a bone marrow transplant. Kipper remains in remission.

“They created a bed for him (Prater) inside of the room with me,” Kipper said in a 2016 interview. “Craig was my caregiver through all of this. He was there 24/7 – never left my side.”

Kipper, who has been with Prater for 48 years and married him three years ago, added: “There can be a certain discomfort for gay couples, not knowing how doctors are going to accept (them). It’s a very nerve-wracking thing. (But at City of Hope), we could not have been more accepted. It was perfect.”

In addition to providing outstanding patient-centered care, City of Hope also achieved the “Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality” distinction through the dedication and work of Pride in the City, sponsored by City of Hope’s Diversity & Inclusion group. Pride in the City worked with other City of Hope units to implement several patient initiatives:

•    Incorporated sexual orientation and gender identity questions into patient intake forms.
•    Developed and approved a patient care policy titled “Management of Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Patients.”
•    Trained select City of Hope leaders in accredited LGBTQ+ patient-centered care and provided culture awareness workshops to City of Hope employees.
•    Distributed LGBTQ-friendly badge cards worn by City of Hope providers and employees.
•    Updated its external careers website with a nondiscrimination statement that included protections for both sexual orientation and gender identity.
•    Designated “all gender restrooms” for City of Hope patients and staff.

In addition, City of Hope implemented employee support, such as health insurance benefits for transgender employees for transition-related health needs, and an employee on-the-job transition program provided by the Diversity & Inclusion group. City of Hope has also designated a patient navigator who will be available to assist LGBTQ patients.

About City of Hope
City of Hope is an independent research and treatment center for cancer, diabetes and other life-threatening diseases. Designated as one of only 48 comprehensive cancer centers, the highest recognition bestowed by the National Cancer Institute, City of Hope is also a founding member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, with research and treatment protocols that advance care throughout the world. City of Hope is located in Duarte, California, just northeast of Los Angeles, with community clinics throughout Southern California. It is ranked as one of "America's Best Hospitals" in cancer by U.S. News & World Report. Founded in 1913, City of Hope is a pioneer in the fields of bone marrow transplantation, diabetes and numerous breakthrough cancer drugs based on technology developed at the institution. For more information about City of Hope, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or Instagram.

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