As a lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender person you are entitled to exactly the same standards of care as heterosexual people in the NHS. 

This is now clearly stated in the NHS Constitution, which replaced the Patient Charter, that was launched in 2009, and which, under the 2009 Health Bill, all NHS organisations have to comply with. NHS services will always be available for the people who need them. Remember, no one can deny you the right to access these services because of your race, religion or belief, gender, disability or sexual orientation - these are all 'unreasonable grounds' on which to refuse patients access. 'Reasonable grounds' to refuse access to the NHS include abusive or violent behaviour by the patient, for example.' The Handbook to the NHS Constitution, p13, 2009 

The General Medical Council has also produced a specific resource in partnership with Stonewall on the rights of LGB people in relation to doctors which can be downloaded from their website. 


Stonewall conducted two national surveys of health among lesbians and bisexual women (2007)  and gay and bisexual men (2011) and provided local data at a borough level from these surveys. 

Southwark accounted for 38% of the women in London participating in the national survey of lesbian and bisexual women's health in 2007, the largest survey of its kind in the world (6,000 women/85 in southwark). These women reported:


- over 20% were active smokers

- 24% had drunk alcohol on five or more days out of the last seven

- 35% had used recreational drugs within the last year

- less than 50% had ever been tested for a sexually transmitted disease

- 12.5% had never had a smear test for cervical cancer

- 2.5% had attempted suicide in the last year and 13.8% had self-harmed

- 16.3% had experienced domestic violence from a female partner and 1.3% from a male partner

- 44% were carrying excess weight i.e. overweight or obese

- 44.3% had not disclosed their sexual orientation to their GP or healthcare professional and over 50% reported a negative healthcare experience in the last year

A similar survey was conducted in 2011 for gay and bisexual men, over 6,800 men responded, 171 men responded in Southwark, equating to 8.5% of the London sample (2nd highest after Lambeth). These men reported that:

- 26% were currently smoking and 70% had tried smoking

- 59% had drunk alcohol on 3 or more days out of the last seven

- 64.7% had used recreational drugs in the last year

- 40% were carrying excess weight i.e. overweight or obese

- just under 5% had attempted suicide in the last year and 10% had experienced moderate to severe anxiety or depression and 7% had deliberately self harmed in the last year

- 49% had experienced domestic violence since the age of 16yrs

- 22% had experienced domestic violence from a family member

- 11% had be diagnosed with diabetes- 13% had never tested for sexually transmitted disease and 13.5% had a never had an HIV test

- 33% had negative experience of healthcare

- 20% were not out to their GP or healthcare professionals