GMC publishes guide for LGBT patients

A GUIDE for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) patients has been published by the General Medical Council (GMC), setting out what should be expected from their doctor.

The new guide has been published to coincide with Pride Month and has been produced in collaboration with LGBT rights charity Stonewall and LGBT doctors’ organisation GLADD.

It makes clear that all patients should be treated fairly and without discrimination, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity and trans status. LGBT patients should have their confidentiality respected and must not be denied access to appropriate treatment or healthcare services because of a doctor’s personal beliefs.

The GMC cites research showing that 14 per cent LGBT people have experienced some form of unequal treatment from healthcare staff. The new guide includes examples of what LGBT patients should and shouldn’t expect from their doctor and what to do if they are concerned about their care.

Charlie Massey, the GMC’s Chief Executive, said: "Doctors have a duty to treat LGBT patients with the same respect and understanding as all their patients. We know most doctors do this, but we also know that LGBT patients can face discrimination and unfair treatment. This new guide sets out clearly what they should expect from doctors, and what they can do if their treatment falls below those standards."

Link: Your rights as lesbian, gay, bi and trans patients

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