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Berkshire Medical Center Named Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality

PITTSFIELD — Berkshire Medical Center has been recognized as a “Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality” by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the country’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) civil-rights organization. This is the second year in a row that BMC has achieved this designation.

The findings were part of HRC Foundation’s Healthcare Equality Index 2014, a unique annual survey that encourages equal care for LGBT Americans and recognizes healthcare institutions doing the best work. BMC earned top marks in meeting non-discrimination and training criteria that demonstrate its commitment to equitable, inclusive care for LGBT patients and their families, who can face significant challenges in securing the quality healthcare and respect they deserve.

“We live and work in an area known for both its beauty and its diversity, and the staff at Berkshire Medical Center is committed to providing the highest level of quality care for all in our community,” said Diane Kelly, chief operating officer. “This is a remarkable distinction, and I am proud of our entire staff. It is the dedication they show each and every day in the care of each and every patient that has led to this and our many other national recognitions.”

BMC was one of 426 healthcare facilities nationwide to be named Leaders in LGBT Healthcare Equality. Facilities awarded this title meet key criteria, including patient and employee non-discrimination policies that specifically mention sexual orientation and gender identity, a guarantee of equal visitation for same-sex partners and parents, and LGBT health education for key staff members.

“Leaders in LGBT Healthcare Equality change the lives of LGBT patients and their families for the better each and every day,” said Chad Griffin, HRC president. “LGBT people should be treated equally in all aspects of our lives, and HRC celebrates Berkshire Medical Center’s staff for its tireless work to create an inclusive and welcoming environment for all patients.”

The Healthcare Equality Index offers healthcare facilities unique and powerful resources designed to help provide equal care to a long-overlooked group of patients, as well as assistance in complying with new regulatory requirements and access to high-quality staff training. For more information about the index or to download a free copy of the report, visit www.hrc.org/hei.

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