Eight Hackensack Meridian Health Hospitals Honored for LGBTQ Policies and Practices by Human Rights Campaign Foundation

August 26, 2019

National survey recognizes Hackensack Meridian Health for its equitable treatment and inclusion of LGBTQ patients, visitors and team members 

Hackensack Meridian Health, New Jersey’s largest and most comprehensive health network,today announced that eight of its network hospitals received “Leader” and “Top Performer” status from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation (HRC), the educational arm of the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization. The designations, awarded in the 12th edition of HRC’s Healthcare Equality Index (HEI), demonstrate Hackensack Meridian Health’s commitment to the equitable treatment, and public commitment to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) patients, visitors and team members.

“We are proud to be recognized by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation for our efforts to provide a fair, equitable and inclusive environment for all patients, team members and visitors we serve,” said Robert C. Garrett, FACHE, CEO of Hackensack Meridian Health“At Hackensack Meridian Health, we are committed to delivering respectful, compassionate care that meets the unique health care needs of LGBTQ patients and their families.”

Six Hackensack Meridian Health hospitals earned LGBTQ Health Care Equality Leader designation – with a perfect score of 100:

  • Hackensack University Medical Center, Hackensack
  • Ocean Medical Center, Brick
  • Bayshore Medical Center, Holmdel
  • Southern Ocean Medical Center, Manahawkin
  • Raritan Bay Medical Center, Perth Amboy
  • Riverview Medical Center, Red Bank

Two Hackensack Meridian Health hospitals were designated as HEI Top Performer” – scoring from 80 to 95 points:

  • Jersey Shore University Medical Center, Neptune City
  • JFK Medical Center, Edison

A record 680 health care facilities actively participated in the HEI 2019 survey. The facilities were evaluated based on the following: non-discrimination and staff training, patient services and support, employee benefits and policies, and patient and community engagement.

Eight Hackensack Meridian Health hospitals participated in this year’s HEI 2019 survey. In 2018, Hackensack University Medical Center was the only hospitalto earn a perfect score of 100. In 2020, the network plans for all hospitals to participate in the HEI survey, with the goal of scoring in the top percentile.

Hackensack Meridian Health is committed to addressing the unique needs and issues of the LGBTQ community and has implemented the following policies and practices:

  • The establishment of Pride and Allies team member resource group a Diversity & Inclusion initiative that offers team members an opportunity to create an open forum to share innovative ideas, collaborate, enhance professional growth, provide a diverse perspective, and strengthen the linkage within the community.
  • The establishment of Transgender Patient Policy to ensure equitable and compassionate treatment and management of transgender patients.
  • Diversity training and education, including Cultural Competency Training, on the LGBTQ patient care and other related topics, along with training on how to collect Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity data for the network’s electronic health records.
  • Meaningful community partnerships and outreach programs, including the Garden State Equality, Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG), Q-Spot LGBT Community Center; and Human Rights Campaign to provide resources, support and counseling on the LGBTQIAA community.
  • The formation of the Hackensack Meridian Health LGBTQ Health and Wellness Resource external website to educate patients and broader community.