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New AHA scientific statement: discrimination a barrier to LGBT heart health

There have been new findings by the American Heart Association that show a link in health disparities among the LGBT community and cardiovascular health.

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According to a new report in the AHA Journal, nearly 56% of sexual minority and 70% of gender minority adults report having experienced some form of discrimination from clinicians (including the use of harsh/abusive language). They also found that ≈8% of sexual minorities and 25% of and transgender individuals have been denied health care by clinicians.

 These experiences lead to fear of discrimination and decreases the likelihood that a person who identifies as LGBT would seek care for a cardiovascular issue along with other health concerns. This coupled with higher incidences of risk factors such as smoking rates and life stressors make this a real concern for the health of the LGBT community. All people deserve the right to quality medical care provided with respect, no matter what. We encourage advocates in the LGBT community to advocate for their own quality health care. If your physician isn’t treating you well – find one that will. You deserve care. We also encourage our health professional advocates to treat all patients with empathy, kindness, and respect.

Everyone deserves a chance at a longer, healthier life.

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