If you or someone you love is a member of the LGBTQ+ community in Texas, you may realize that few options are available for end-of-life care, especially when one lives in a rural community. To make matters worse, isolation is often more extreme for this group because of discrimination.
The dangers of isolation
More hospices have attempted to make life better for end-of-life care, but advocacy groups indicated that more needs to be done under hospice law to accommodate LGBTQ+ individuals. These people tend to have smaller social circles, including family and friends as caregivers, and fewer hospices are available. The world gets smaller for terminally ill patients as they can do less and less. Terminally ill LGBTQ+ individuals risk becoming socially, physically and distanced from medical support structures.
Telehealth can help, but many legislatures have started to ban gender-affirming healthcare. Hospice administrators tend to say that they don’t have many LGBTQ+ individuals in their communities, but the truth is they have been there all along and have never received gender-affirming health care as they have remained quiet about their sexual orientation. Interdisciplinary teams trained to recognize the needs of LGBTQ+ individuals can help avoid human rights violations.
Running your healthcare business to meet patient needs
Healthcare businesses, including hospices, have many regulatory and compliance issues that they need to follow. The human element sometimes gets lost in the shuffle when trying to ensure you will continue to meet myriad rules so your operation doesn’t suffer penalties.
When providing compassionate healthcare to the LGBTQ+ community, medical organizations and hospices must take it upon themselves to implement caring measures that meet the needs of these individuals. Finding educational programs to address these needs may be one possible solution and a step in the right direction.