LGBTQ Health & Wellness: Be Healthy, Be Proud

The LGBTQ Health & Wellness program is a coalition of statewide partners formed in 2008 that includes healthcare providers and professionals, and community-based organizations and companies. Under One Iowa’s leadership, we help LGBTQ Iowans navigate the complexities of the healthcare system.

LGBTQ Health & Wellness program goals include:

  • Increasing the health status and quality of life for LGBTQ Iowans.
  • Raising cultural competency standards for service providers.
  • Acting as a clearinghouse for resources and information.

To achieve these goals, One Iowa offers cultural competency trainings and education about LGBTQ-specific healthcare challenges to providers who want to offer informed and respectful care to LGBTQ patients. We also provide technical assistance to community organizations and government agencies interested in serving the LGBTQ community in Iowa.

Throughout the year, One Iowa offers a number of health and wellness opportunities for community members:

  • The LGBTQ Health and Wellness conference educates healthcare professionals and clinics in cultural competency for LGBTQ people. In addition, it helps members of the LGBTQ community learn and utilize methods to assist clinics and health professionals in becoming culturally competent to LGBT individuals. The conference offers a variety of networking opportunities for attendees, increases resource availability throughout the state, and addresses specific needs of LGBTQ people.
  • The LGBT health study helps us understand the barriers and needs of LGBT Iowans, which is critical to move forward with health programs and provide adequate healthcare. The LGBT health study was completed utilizing an online survey, statewide focus groups, and secondary data analysis to identify areas that can be improved to increase the health status of LGBT Iowans. In addition, the study acts as a resource for organizations to utilize when developing or creating health programs targeting LGBT Iowans.
  • Cultural competency trainings are available for healthcare facilities, including modules for healthcare providers and healthcare support staff. A training module is also available for community-based organizations and government agencies seeking technical assistance specific to health and wellness, to provide services, or reach out to the LGBTQ community in Iowa. Please contact One Iowa for more information about these trainings.

It’s important that LGBTQ people in Iowa know that culturally competent healthcare exists for them, and where they can access it. This is especially important for transgender individuals, who face the highest level of discrimination and misunderstanding from healthcare professionals.

Utilizing public education, trainings and research, our hope is that we can expand the number of healthcare resources available for LGBTQ people in the state. it’s essential that we encourage the culture of our healthcare system to be one that is accepting, understanding and competent.

Do you identify as a woman, trans woman, or trans man? You may be eligible for health services from the Care for Yourself program.


Click to Read the Iowa LGBT Health & Wellness Study 2013-14