For the third consecutive year, Rush Oak Park Hospital has been recognized as a “Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality” in the Healthcare Equality Index (HEI), an annual survey of how health care facilities in the United States treat lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender patients and their families, as well as their own LGBT employees. The report on the 2016 survey was released today.

Rush Oak Park Hospital and its partner, Rush University Medical Center, are among a select group of 496 health care facilities nationwide to be named a leader in the report, which rated 2,061 health care facilities in all. The hospital met all of the core criteria of the HEI survey, as it has for each of the three years that it has participated in the survey. Rush University Medical Center also met all the criteria again in its eighth consecutive year as an LGBT health leader.

The survey’s criteria include patient and employee non-discrimination policies that specifically mention sexual orientation and gender identity; a guarantee of equal visitation for same-sex partners and parents; and LGBT health education for key staff members. The HEI survey is administered annually by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the HRC, the largest LGBT organization in the United States, and is intended to encourage equal care of LGBT patients.

“This is a great honor,” said Bruce Elegant, president and CEO of Rush Oak Park Hospital. “The designation as a leader in LGBT healthcare speaks to the initiative of the hospital and staff. We are committed to improving access to LGBT knowledgeable healthcare providers, improving healthcare resources for the LGBT community and implementation of LGBT best practices.”

“Despite all the progress we’ve made, far too many LGBT people still lack inclusive and affirming health care.  Leaders in LGBT Healthcare Equality are helping to change that, and, in the process, making the lives of LGBT patients and their families better each and every day,” said Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign.

“LGBT people have a right to be treated equally in all aspects of our lives, and HRC celebrates Rush Oak Park Hospital and Rush University Medical Center for their work to create an inclusive and welcoming environment for all patients.”

The Healthcare Equality Index 2016 is available online.