LGBT Communities and the Affordable Care Act

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-Full report-

Author(s): The Center for American Progress

  • Laura E. Durso
  • Kellan Baker
  • Andrew Cray

Published: October 10th, 2013

Report Intro/Brief:
"Implementing the Affordable Care Act requires efforts from a variety of stakeholders to ensure that the benefits of the law reach everyone who needs them. This is particularly the case for members of historically marginalized and disadvantaged populations, such as the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender, or LGBT, population.

Research shows that experiences of discrimination—from overt acts such as being fired from a job to the stress associated with concealing one’s LGBT identity out of fear of rejection—correlate with both physical and mental health disparities between LGBT and non-LGBT people. LGBT people are also more likely than the general population to lack health insurance coverage, due in part to some LGBT people being unable to include their same-sex partners on employer-based insurance plans. And because most health care providers do not receive training on working with LGBT patients, many LGBT individuals and their families face barriers to quality health care such as refusals of care, substandard care, lack of access to appropriate preventive screenings, inequitable policies and practices, and exclusion from health outreach or education efforts.

The Affordable Care Act presents an unprecedented opportunity to address these disparities and improve the well-being and economic security of LGBT communities by promoting access to affordable, comprehensive health insurance coverage. As a result of the Affordable Care Act, millions of LGBT people and their families will experience improvements in the quality of coverage they have—such as LGBT-inclusive anti-discrimination protections—or will have access to health insurance coverage for the first time."
-from the report intro