Original Article

Health Disparities among Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Adults in Nashville, Tennessee

Authors: Gilbert Gonzales, PhD, MHA, Caroline Young, MS, Emily Masters, MA, Emilio Loret de Mola, BA


Objectives: Health disparities for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) adults are well documented, but LGBT health data at the municipal and county levels are lacking, especially in the southern United States. The objective of this study was to compare access to care, health outcomes, and behavioral risk factors between LGBT and non-LGBT adults in Nashville and Davidson County, Tennessee.

Methods: Data for this study came from a randomly selected, population-based sample of LGBT (n = 128) and non-LGBT (n = 1583) adults in Nashville. Multivariable logistic regression models were used to compare health outcomes between LGBT and non-LGBT Nashvillians while adjusting for demographic characteristics and socioeconomic status.

Results: LGBT Nashvillians were more likely to be uninsured (odds ratio [OR] 3.96, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.72–9.10), report unmet medical care needs because of cost (OR 2.20, 95% CI 1.14–4.25), exhibit worse mental health outcomes (eg, frequent mental distress; OR 4.53, 95% CI 2.33–8.80), and report high-risk behaviors for human immunodeficiency virus (OR 9.47, 95% CI 3.96–22.62) compared with non-LGBT Nashvillians.

Conclusions: To achieve health equity for LGBT individuals at the municipal level, Nashville and Tennessee should consider multifaceted approaches to expanding health insurance coverage and nondiscrimination protections and address mental health and human immunodeficiency virus risks among vulnerable populations.
Posted in: Infectious Disease90 Mental Health38 Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) And Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) Infection12

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