RWJBarnabas Health takes ‘Pride’ in serving health care needs of LGBTQ+ community

RWJBarnabas Health has been recognizing Pride Month with a series of events to demonstrate its continued commitment to advancing the quality and equality of care for LGBTQ+ colleagues, patients and neighbors.

To date, 90% of RWJBarnabas Health employees have participated in system-wide LGBTQ+ cultural sensitivity training, and the system also requires all new hires to complete the course.

“As part of our ongoing commitment to diversity, equity & inclusion, we have continued to expand LGBTQ+ treatment services and are working to close the gap in care in our state,” Trina Parks, executive vice president, corporate chief diversity & inclusion officer, RWJBarnabas Health, stated. “Currently, 10 of our system’s hospitals are designated as ‘Leaders in LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality’ by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, the educational arm of the nation’s largest LGBTQ+ civil rights organization. This distinguished designation demonstrates our continued commitment to delivering culturally sensitive and inclusive care to all.”

RWJBarnabas Health has long prioritized ensuring that all New Jerseyans, particularly those in the LGBTQ+ community, are seen, heard and valued within the RWJBarnabas Health system and are treated with the dignity, respect and equality they deserve during Pride Month and beyond. RWJBarnabas Health hospitals and medical centers serve as a welcoming, inclusive environment, with physicians and staff dedicated in their commitment to equitably serve the needs of the LGBTQ+ population.

Notably, the Babs Siperstein PROUD Center at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital-Somerset, the first hospital in New Jersey to offer specialized primary care services for the LGBTQIA community, marked its fifth anniversary earlier this year. The Babs Siperstein PROUD Center serves more than 1,000 patients and is open five days a week, offering services such as primary medical care for children and adults, hormone therapy and monitoring, HIV care, health education, counseling, support groups and referrals for specialty services, according to the statement. Additionally, the PROUD Gender Center of New Jersey, located at RWJUH-New Brunswick, provides a full suite of specialized services in full support of the transgender community. At the center, a multidisciplinary team of family medicine physicians, gynecologists, urologists, endocrinologists, plastic surgeons and otolaryngologists provides specialized care for LGBTQ patients. Hormone therapy and surgical procedures are offered to support the transition of transgender patients.

To celebrate Pride and expand health equity for the LGBTQ+ community, RWJBarnabas Health facilities across the state have held several events, including:

  • Pride flag raising ceremonies;
  • LGBTQ health equity trainings for employees;
  • A special Facebook Live discussion about gender affirmation surgeries;
  • Pride decorating contests;
  • A “Love out Loud” and Chalk Walk;
  • “Spilling the Tea with RWJBarnabas Health’s LGBTQ+ Leaders” panel discussion event;
  • A History of Pride Lunch & Learn; and
  • Diversity and Inclusion PRIDE Month Book Club.

The events serve as an expression of RWJBarnabas Health’s commitment to supporting and advancing the healthcare needs of LGBTQIA+ colleagues, patients, and community members to create a more inclusive society.

To learn more about the LGBTQIA+ services that RWJBarnabas Health provides, click here.