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June 07, 2024
hpio news

Graphic of the week: LGBTQ+ Pride Month


As national celebrations begin for Pride Month, HPIO analysis of data on LGBTQ+ youth shows that large disparities exist in poor mental health and suicide attempts, compared to heterosexual teens, although community support can play a key role in reducing those numbers.
Gay, lesbian and bisexual youth in Ohio are 2.2 times more likely to report poor mental health and 4.6 times more likely to report a suicide attempt in the past 12 months, as illustrated above. However, national data from the Trevor Project shows that LGBTQ+ young people who reported living in very accepting communities attempted suicide at half the rate of those who live in very unaccepting communities.
HPIO’s 2024 Health Value Dashboard includes an equity profile for LGBTQ+ Ohioans. The Dashboard found that homophobia and transphobia are primary drivers of poor outcomes experienced by LGBTQ+ Ohioans of all ages. Experiencing these forms of discrimination can cause toxic stress, leading to poor health outcomes over time. Thus, LGBTQ+ Ohioans often experience worse outcomes than heterosexual and/or cisgender Ohioans across measures of health and the social environment. Policies and practices that limit access to necessary health care and a lack of protections for Ohioans based on sexual orientation and gender identity contribute to worse health outcomes for LGBTQ+ people compared to their heterosexual and/or cisgender peers.
There are evidence-informed strategies that Ohio leaders can adopt to improve health disparities for LGBTQ+ Ohioans. By ensuring access to developmentally appropriate care, improving provider education and including sexual orientation and gender identity in anti-discrimination laws, Ohio can create more accepting communities and close gaps in health outcomes for LGBTQ+ Ohioans.