Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Education in Nursing

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As nurse educators, we need to ensure that safe, competent, and culturally sensitive care is provided to all patients regardless of culture, socioeconomic status, religion, and sexual and/or gender orientation. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals are a diverse population who face many health disparities. Research shows nurses often lack the proper education to adequately provide safe and competent care to the LGBT community. At the local college, LGBT education was not being covered in the nursing curriculum. To help nursing students learn about the health disparities faced by LGBT individuals, an article on LGBT care published in a nursing journal1 was provided to 45 students (25 sophomores, 14 juniors, and 6 seniors) to read. To assess learning, the students answered 15 questions before and after reading the article. The 15 questions were provided by the journal as an opportunity to receive continuing education (CE) credits. After reading the article, the students gained a better understanding of the health disparities faced by LGBT individuals. The students also learned that by reading a nursing journal they could increase their understanding about topics essential to nursing practice and how to obtain CE hours. As nurse educators, we should seek a variety of teaching modalities to help students not only learn the course material but also recognize the importance of reading scholarly nursing journals and seeking CE opportunities throughout their nursing careers.
By Maureen Kroning, EdD, RN, Associate Professor of Nursing, Nyack College, Nyack, New York (Maureen.kroning@yack.edu).
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