Perceptions of lesbian, gay and bisexual people of primary healthcare services

Neville, Stephen and Henrickson, Mark (2006) Perceptions of lesbian, gay and bisexual people of primary healthcare services. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 55 4: 407-415. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2648.2006.03944.x

Author Neville, Stephen
Henrickson, Mark
Title Perceptions of lesbian, gay and bisexual people of primary healthcare services
Journal name Journal of Advanced Nursing   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0309-2402
Publication date 2006-08-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1365-2648.2006.03944.x
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 55
Issue 4
Start page 407
End page 415
Total pages 8
Place of publication United Kingdom
Publisher Blackwell Science
Language eng
Subject 1110 Nursing
Formatted abstract
This paper reports a study exploring people's perceptions of disclosure about lesbian, gay and bisexual identity to their primary healthcare providers.

Disclosure of sexual identity to healthcare professionals is integral to attending to the health needs of lesbian, gay and bisexual populations, as non-disclosure has been shown to have a negative impact on the health of these people. For example, an increased incidence of suicide, depression and other mental health problems have been reported.


From April to July 2004, a national survey of lesbian, gay and bisexual persons was carried out in New Zealand. Participants were recruited through mainstream and lesbian, gay and bisexual media and venues, and 2269 people completed the questionnaire, either electronically or via hard copy. The 133-item instrument included a range of closed-response questions in a variety of domains of interest.

In this paper, we report results from the health and well-being domain. More women than men identified that the practitioner's attitude toward their non-heterosexual identity was important when choosing a primary healthcare provider. Statistically significantly more women than men reported that their healthcare provider usually or always presumed that they were heterosexual and in addition more women had disclosed their sexual identity to their healthcare provider.

Nurses need to reconsider their approach to all users of healthcare services by not assuming everyone is heterosexual, integrating questions about sexual identity into health interviews and ensuring that all other aspects of the assessment process are appropriate and safe for lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
Keyword Attitudes
Primary health care
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Unknown

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 84 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 91 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Wed, 01 Apr 2009, 01:58:22 EST by Maryanne Watson on behalf of School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work