Medbelle's LGBTQ+ Events and Culture Network

We are delighted to announce the launch of Medbelle’s new events and culture community designed as a safe space for LGBTQ+ people and allies to celebrate Pride culture.

Medbelle's LGBTQ+ Events and Culture Network

Written by Cory Jones

Published: Tuesday, 15 March 2022

We are delighted to announce the launch of Medbelle’s new events and culture community designed as a safe space for LGBTQ+ people and allies to celebrate Pride culture. The self-organised group has begun with a mission to provide resources, education and peer-to-peer support for Medbelle’s LGBTQ+ team members while also planning team events and charity fundraising. The group is open to all members of the Medbelle team and also looks forward to welcoming future members, offering an easy and like-minded network to join with useful local resources to help those that have recently moved to the area.

Reshaping the relationship between healthcare and the LGBTQ+ Community

The Medbelle LGBT+ network also interlinks closely with our mission to raise the standard of healthcare for all. Medbelle provides personalised support, built on listening and responding to the needs of individual patients. With one-to-one care, our Patient Care Advisers support patients throughout their journey, from their initial call, through their consultation, treatment and remaining with them during their recovery and aftercare.

One of the goals the network aims to achieve includes organising education for the patient care team on communication with patients with an LGBT+ background. Our Patient Care Advisers are naturally empathetic and caring, but often people can feel worried or ill-equipped when discussing LGBTQ+ related topics, particularly trans-related topics, due to inexperience. The network provides educational tools and guidance to aid any staff member but focuses on the patient care team so they can feel confident they are providing care in the most appropriate and sensitive way for all LGBT+ patients.

Indeed, evidence suggests that LGBT+ people have disproportionately worse health outcomes.

The healthcare systems and pathways that are in place today have been the result of developments over decades with an almost unchallenged acceptance of the dichotomy of gender. Those who do not identify within the gender binary often feel excluded from health services or the medical industry. Furthermore, some studies show that LGBTQ+ individuals are delaying primary care visits because of a fear of being treated differently. According to the 2017 National LGBT survey, at least 16% of the 108,000 survey respondents who accessed or tried to access public health services had a negative experience because of their sexual orientation. At least 38% had a negative experience because of their gender identity. (LGBT NHS England)

According to a study published in the BMC Medical Education Journal, LGBTQ+ individuals experience higher rates of health disparities. This is perpetuated by implicit biases and even explicit prejudices and discrimination from some healthcare workers and an overall lack of trust in healthcare to understand and do right for LGBTQ+ patients, despite commitments to patient care equality. We hope and we believe that things are changing, but Medbelle also wishes to play an active role in shaping the relationship between healthcare and the LGBTQ+ community. This can be achieved by raising awareness of health disparities or educating healthcare workers to confront their implicit biases.

Events & fundraising

Our LGBT+ network is also committed to organising events and fundraising to embed LGBTQ+ activities into our social calendars here at Medbelle. Those wishing to participate in open events aimed at members and allies alike can expect fun events to bring together people with like-minded minds and awareness. Smaller events are also planned, aimed at LGBTQ+ members wanting to discuss deeper topics and issues in a safer space. Already embedded into the Medbelle culture is our fundraising ambitions. The network is, of course, no different, and fundraising initiatives have been planned for the New Year with prospective organisations, including Berlin-based non-profits such as Gegen, LSVD and the Queer Refugees Deutschland.

Last month the network was proud to host their first event to announce the creation of the group. A celebratory karaoke event where participants had the opportunity to sing their hearts out and come together to enjoy LGBTQ+ culture. With more events planned with a heavy focus on fundraising, the next planned event is a group visit to the LGBTQ+ themed Christmas market later in December.

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