Each year, the Vice Chancellor’s LGBTQ+ Advisory Council organizes an annual Improving OUTcomes Conference with an important mission: invite regional and national experts in LGBTQ+ care to share their knowledge on best clinical practices and ways to improving the quality of care for LGBTQ+ patients and their families.
Last year, the planning committee delivered a conference that sets a record attendance (see 2018 conference recap here). This year, the planning committee was charged to organize the conference focused on health and health care across the ages, highlighting the medical, mental health, and social needs of the aging LGBTQ+ population. The planning committee came through again, setting an even higher bar of 160 attendees from over 36 organizations/institutions!
The Conference started with screening of a documentary film, Gen Silent, highlighting the struggles of LGBT seniors who must choose if they will hide their sexuality in order to survive in the long-term health care system. The screening was followed by deep, thoughtful discussion with the director, Stu Maddux.
In light of the challenges LGBTQ seniors face, our Saturday program focused on shedding light on aging well with PRIDE. Dr. Kathleen Sullivan, our keynote speaker, shared research data and pathways to caring and aging with pride. Throughout the day, we offered four workshop tracks: Medical, Education, Community, and Aging. These workshops covered topics from primary care to legal issues (see 2019 conference program here).
The conference was invigorating; the speakers were inspiring; the attendees were enthusiastic; and connections and collaborations were made. We could not have asked for a better outcome. Thanks to the attendees and speakers for coming together to make a difference in advancing LGBTQ+ health. Also thanks to the Office for Health Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion for supporting this important conference. We hope to see you and your colleagues next year as we continue to advance LGBTQ+ health!
– Chao-Yin Chen, Ph.D.
Quotes from attendees:
“We appreciate the immense work and forethought in creating such a rich and insightful program for us over this weekend”
“The information was extremely useful for me on a personal level”
“Fabulous content, excellent delivery, directly useful in practice”
“Helpful in working with LGBTQ+ elders at the end of life”