Two hospitals in Pune, Bharati Hospital and King Edward Memorial (KEM) Hospital have made their service inclusive for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex (LGBTQI) community. The objective is to ensure that the members of the community are provided a safe and comfortable environment in which to access healthcare services.
An LGBTQI clinic has already become functional at Bharati Hospital, which has also designed a protocol to assess individuals who require help, medical as well as psychological.
Bharati Hospital has also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Samapathik Trust for referrals to the Psychiatry department and SRS (sex reassignment surgery) services. Support has been received from the Consulate General of Canada in Mumbai along with technical assistance from the Humsafar Trust, that works for gay rights.
The two hospitals had earlier brought out a manual, Basics of LGBTQI Inclusion in Hospitals, in collaboration with the Samapathik Trust and Bindu Queer Rights Foundation. The hospitals will now use the same manual to bring about changes in their services.
This manual highlights the lack of toilets for the LGBTQI community, which has been recognised as the third gender by the Supreme Court. The need to train the other employees in hospitals, such as ward assistants, security personnel as well as nurses on how to deal with members of the LGBTQI community is emphasised in the manual. It informs readers about the way to obtain medical insurance for transgenders too.