New Report Says LGBT Missourians Less Healthy Than General Population

Aug 28, 2012

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Missourians have less access to healthcare and tend to be less healthy than the general population. That’s according to a new report by the Missouri Foundation for Health.

The report finds LGBT individuals are less likely to seek preventative care, have higher rates of unhealthy behaviors like smoking, and are more likely to be physically assaulted at school.

The LGBT community has a higher uninsured rate compared to their heterosexual peers, according to the Missouri Foundation for Health’s Ryan Barker.

“We know that in the general population, maybe one spouse is working, one spouse stays at home. And that working spouse can often put their husband or wife on their insurance," says Barker. "And that option doesn’t exist for the LGBT populations in most instances.”

Barker says poorer health and less health care access are tied to discrimination. The report suggests the state adopt housing and employment discrimination protection, and employers should be required to offer domestic partner insurance coverage.