LGBTQ people are more likely to smoke and drink, says report

The NHS must do more to alleviate health inequality in the LGBTQ community, a new report says. The report, commissioned by the Women and Equalities Committee of MPs, says hospitals and care homes should be fined if they don’t collect  data on patients’ sexual orientation.

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

 Despite NHS guidelines recommending  GPs and other health professionals ask patients questions about their sexual orientation but the report says this doesn’t seem to be the case.

Health issues that disproportionally affect LGBTQ people include higher rates of smoking,  higher levels of alcohol consumption and cancer.

The report said: “Health and social care professionals do not always understand the needs that LGBT people have, and often do not consider these needs to be relevant to their care.”

To address these issues the report suggests  Public Health England should work with the National LGB&T Partnership on a five-year plan of health campaigns directed at LGBTQ people and that role of the national LGBT health adviser should be prioritised and confirmed for the next three years.