Jun 06, 2019
In recognition of National Pride Month, NYC Health + Hospitals today announced the opening of two new comprehensive Pride Health Centers, dedicated to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning/queer (LGBTQ) patients. The new health centers at NYC Health + Hospitals/ Bellevue and NYC Health + Hospitals/Gotham Health, Gouverneur in Manhattan will provide culturally responsive health services to LGBTQ New Yorkers and address barriers that contribute to health disparities among LGBTQ youth and adults. The new Pride Health Centers are the public health system’s third and fourth, building on a commitment to the LGBTQ community that has earned NYC Health + Hospitals national recognition as “Leaders in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality.” Expanding access to care for LGBTQ adolescents and adults is part of the health system’s broader multi-year redesign to build a competitive, sustainable organization that will continue to offer high-quality and accessible health care to the people of New York City. The new centers also support First Lady Chirlane McCray’s NYC Unity Project, the City’s first-ever, multi-agency strategy to deliver unique services to LGBTQ youth.
“With the opening of two more Pride Centers, we are reaffirming our commitment to guaranteeing inclusive and comprehensive care to LGBTQ communities,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Dr. Herminia Palacio. “At a time when the federal government is turning its back on our LGBTQ Gender non-binary neighbors, this city is making it clear that everyone has the right to be as exactly who they are and to get the care they need without discrimination.”
“The opening of our two new Pride Health Centers further demonstrates Health + Hospitals’ commitment to ensure all New Yorkers have access to culturally responsive, high-quality health care,” said Mitchell Katz, MD, President and CEO of NYC Health + Hospitals. “We are proud to continue to break down barriers to health care that marginalized communities face.”
“We are incredibly proud to open the Pride Health Center at NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue,” said Richard Greene, M.D., Medical Director of the NYC Health + Hospital/ Bellevue’s Pride Health Center. “The opening reflects years of service to the community, the development of affirming and accessible services, and a passion for and commitment to the LGBTQ community. Whether you are trying to access HIV prevention services, hormone therapy, or Women’s Health services, we are here to meet your needs.”
“We take great pride in our continued investment to ensure that we provide culturally responsive care to all New Yorkers,” said Matilde Roman, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Office of Diversity and Inclusion, NYC Health + Hospitals. “As New York’s public health care system, we take seriously the responsibility to provide high-quality access to care regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.”
“This is an incredibly important step to ensure LGBTQ youth and adults have access to the healthcare they need. The LGBTQ community faces extraordinary barriers to accessing culturally-competent healthcare. Discrimination and lack of available services put LGBTQ people at heightened risk for a whole range of health issues, and I’m so proud that NYC is continuing to lead in providing access to life-saving care,” said Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney.
“With both LGBTQ rights and access to healthcare under attack, it’s imperative that local governments empower the LGBTQ community. That’s exactly what these Pride Health Centers are doing, and I couldn’t be prouder of my city. I want to thank First Lady Chirlane McCray and the NYC Unity Project for making this a priority and Health and Hospitals for their continued commitment to health services in underserved communities,” said City Council Speaker Corey Johnson.
“LGBTQ New Yorkers suffer disproportionately from substance abuse, depression, and sexually transmitted infections. Given historic biases within the medical community, members of our community are also far less likely to have access to quality care. The expansion of Pride Health Centers across our city is a significant move towards fixing these inequities. As we approach the 50th anniversary of Stonewall, I’m grateful to see our city act on its responsibility to provide high-quality access to all New Yorkers regardless of their gender identity or expression,” said State Senator Brad Hoylman.
“I congratulate New York City Health + Hospitals on the opening of two additional Pride Health Centers,” said Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard N. Gottfried. “This isn’t just about hanging a rainbow sign, it’s about training providers to respect the specific needs of their LGBTQ patients. NYC H+H has earned national recognition for its dedication to equity in health care for LGBTQ New Yorkers and I encourage LGBTQ New Yorkers to seek out health care services at these facilities.”
“All New Yorkers should have access to great health care regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. I applaud New York City Health and Hospitals for providing a center to address specific LGBTQIA+ care in a safe space,” said Assembly Member Harvey Epstein.
“Historically, there have been many barriers for LGBTQ+ community members to access safe and necessary medical attention,” said Assembly Member Yuh-Line Niou. “Medical services can be hard to come by for our LGBTQ+ community because of unfounded discrimination. Access to health services such as preventative care, hormone therapy, OB/GYN services, HIV testing, and PrEP is crucial to New Yorkers, but it is especially vital for the LGBTQ+ community. As we celebrate Pride month, we must continue to recognize the distinct service gaps that our LGBTQ+ community experience and seek to address them. Many of our LGBTQ+ community members receive subpar care due to a lack of understanding from their care providers and are sometimes excluded completely from medical care as a result of discrimination. The opening of NYC Health + Hospitals’ Pride Centers are a large step towards bridging those service gaps and I want to thank NYC Health + Hospitals and Governeur for providing culturally sensitive and accessible healthcare through these centers. I look forward to working with them further on these issues.”
“As someone who represents an area that was ground zero for the AIDS epidemic and has seen the damage that culturally-insensitive health treatment can cause, I knew that one of my top priorities as Chair of the Council’s Committee on Hospitals would be to work with H+H to improve and expand care for LGBTQ+ New Yorkers. So I want to congratulate the entire team at H+H on the opening of these two new facilities at Bellevue and Gouverneur, which will provide culturally-sensitive and curated care for the LGBTQ+ community on Manhattan’s East Side. I look forward, as we celebrate Pride Month, to many more Pride Centers opening and more innovative healthcare practices from H+H in the years to come,” said Councilwoman Carlina Rivera.
“The opening of these new Pride Health Centers is welcome news for LGBTQ New Yorkers,” said NYC Council LGBT Caucus Chair Daniel Dromm. “Now many more LGBTQ individuals will have access to the patient-centered, culturally-competent care they need to stay physically and mentally well. That includes the thousands of people who will visit NYC this month as the community celebrates World Pride and the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion. I applaud the administration for prioritizing and launching this timely initiative.”
“No matter who you are, you should feel that quality healthcare is available, accessible, and welcoming. I thank Bellevue for cementing their commitment to serving all New Yorkers, and going an extra step to create a comfortable environment for LGBTQ youth and adults,” said Council Member Keith Powers.
The new Pride Health Centers will provide LGBTQ-affirming care to the Manhattan community by providers specially trained in the care of LGBTQ patients. Services will include primary care, OB/GYN, behavioral health, dental services, ophthalmology, hormone therapy, testing for sexually transmitted infections and HIV, and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). In addition, post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) preventive services are available during clinic hours and through the hospital’s emergency department.
NYC Health + Hospitals has long been a leader in caring for LGBTQ patients and continues its commitment to providing staff with specialized trainings to ensure LGBTQ patients who seek care at any location across the health system receive responsive health care in a welcoming environment.
The Pride Health Center at NYC Health + Hospitals/Gotham Health, Gouverneur will open Fridays, 9 a.m. – noon. The Pride Health Center at NYC Health + Hospitals/ Bellevue will open Mondays and Fridays, 9 a.m. – 12 noon, with availability on Tuesday and Thursday mornings for urgent appointments. The new Pride Centers will have three dedicated providers who are supported by the extended team of primary care and specialty providers in both patient care sites. In addition to clinic hours, LGBTQ-affirming care is available 24/7 at the hospital and the Gotham Health, Gouverneur clinic.
NYC Health + Hospitals Pride Health Centers:
LGBTQ services specifically tailored for youth and adolescents can be found at NYC Health + Hospitals/Gotham Health, Judson Health Center at 34 Spring St. in Manhattan.
Patients can make an appointment by calling.
To promote the NYC Health + Hospitals Pride Health Centers, the health system has produced two short videos featuring providers and patients that underscore our commitment to health equity. Other promotional elements include a social media advertising campaign running throughout June on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram with a call to action for LGBTQ patients to make an appointment at a nearby Pride Health Center.
NYC Health + Hospitals/Metropolitan was the first public hospital to open a health center dedicated to the health care of LGBTQ patients and last year announced the expansion of health services for transgender patients, including gender-affirming surgeries and increased access to hormone therapy. The Pride Health Center at NYC Health + Hospitals/Metropolitan and NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull will continue to provide its services alongside. In addition to the Pride Health Centers, NYC Health + Hospitals will continue to provide services to LGBTQ youth through their Bridge Program at NYC Health + Hospitals/Gotham Health, Judson Health Center, which offers a one shop for adolescents’ medical, mental health services and other support services, with specialized expertise in service this audience.
NYC Health + Hospitals is one of 22 health systems to be designated “Leaders in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality” by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. The system has received the designation every year since 2015 for providing equitable, knowledgeable, and affirming care to the LGBTQ community. In 2011, NYC Health + Hospitals became the first public healthcare system in the United States to mandate a Cultural Competence Training program for staff. The program was designed to teach staff to provide respectful, patient-centered and culturally competent healthcare services to LGBTQ New Yorkers who are served by the public hospitals, community health centers and nursing homes each year. Videos, such as “Partners in LGBTQ Health Care,” help staff better understand LGBTQ patients to improve access to healthcare and help reduce health disparities related to sexual orientation and gender identification. NYC Health + Hospitals continues to offer staff training sessions for all staff in the system, including its LGBTQ Sensitivity Workshops for hospital police, delivered by the NYPD Community Affairs Bureau’s LGBT Outreach Unit.
In 2018, NYC Health + Hospitals created new electronic medical record fields related to sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender pronouns, and, further, included an organ inventory in the record. Called the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI) Data Collection, this information is an important aid to clinicians and non-clinical staff providing optimal patient care as well as play an important role in creating positive patient environments.
NYC Health + Hospitals also partners with Boston Children’s Hospital and The Fenway Institute to train adolescent medicine providers and pediatricians across the health system in providing clinical services to transgender and non-binary youth, including social/emotional support and the provision of puberty blockers. These services are available at select NYC Health + Hospitals facilities in each borough.