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133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition
December 10-14, 2005
Stewart Landers, JD, MCP, John Snow Incorporated, 44 Farnsworth Street, Boston, MA 02210, 617-482-9485, email@example.com and Michelle Mehta, MPH, RD, Health Services Division, John Snow Incorporated, 44 Farnsworth St., Boston, MA 02210.
The health challenges facing lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) communities in the US are attributed to poor availability of health services, inadequate healthcare access, and increasing risky behaviors, such as smoking. However, data on health disparities impacting these populations are limited since sexual orientation is not collected on most national and state health surveys. Furthermore, policy restrictions on civil rights, such as discrimination, violence, and marriage laws often impede the progression of vital services, increasing LGBT communities' vulnerability and susceptibility to engage in risky behaviors. Community centers serving LGBT populations are the primary source of vital health services for these communities. To explore the challenges facing LGBT communities in greater depth, a preliminary analysis of community center-sponsored programs and current state legislation is used to catalogue states based on health and legislative indicators. Smoking cessation, cancer prevention, heart healthy education, and anti-violence program availability for each LGBT community comprise a health indicator score, which, when coupled with state legislative indicators, provide a state health index. Additionally, these indicators are used to generate such hypotheses as whether LGBT-positive legislation predicts program availability when accounting for factors such as budget and estimated LGBT population size. Literature suggests that ranking states by a health index can encourage changes in resource allocation and legislation, in an effort to improve states' standing. Therefore, this project aims to develop a state ranking system based on the availability of targeted programs and civil rights legislation in an effort to reduce health disparities among LGBT communities.
Keywords: Community Health Programs, Advocacy
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I wish to disclose that I have NO financial interests or other relationship with the manufactures of commercial products, suppliers of commercial services or commercial supporters.
The 133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition (December 10-14, 2005) of APHA