Sheridan VA Medical Center
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Veteran Care
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VHA) is committed to providing quality care to all Veterans including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Veterans. Excellent care has no boundaries.
Sheridan VA Medical Center seeks to promote the health, welfare, and dignity of LGBT Veterans and their families. We are committed to making sensitive and high quality health care accessible. Our policies and practices focus on ensuring a safe, welcoming, and affirmative environment of care for LGBT Veterans. Our employees receive training in clinically competent care that is responsive to the unique needs of LGBT Veterans.
What to Expect as an LGBT Veteran at Sheridan VA Health Care System
- A supportive environment where Veterans can feel safe to express all of their concerns, struggles, and triumphs related to any aspect of their sexual and/or gender identity.
- Veteran-centered, clinically appropriate, and comprehensive health care.
- LGBT focused assistance navigating the health care system through your LGBT Veteran Care Coordinator
- The same high level of care at the Sheridan VA Medical Center and all associated Community Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOCs).
Other LGBT Services
- Primary Care
- Mental Health Services
- Chaplain Services
- Hormone Therapy
- Gender-affirming prosthetics
- HIV and STI testing and counseling
- Provision of PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) for Veterans at risk for HIV
- Provision of PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) for Veterans at risk for HIV
- Substance Abuse treatment
- Navigating long-term care
- Name and Gender affirmation
- Connection to Community Resources
…AND MUCH MORE!
I have not “come out” as LGBT yet. Am I still welcome to use these services?
Yes! We welcome Veterans who are at any stage of the coming out process and those who are already out.
If I “come out” to my providers, will my benefits be taken away?
No. If you come out to any VA provider, you will not risk losing any benefits.
Am I able to use the bathroom that correlates to the gender that I identify with at the VA?
Yes. Per national VHA Directive 2013-003 issued in 2013, transgender people can use any bathroom they feel fits their gender identity.
LGBT Veteran Related Policies
Non-Discrimination: Our Patient Non-Discrimination Policy contains specific language prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity (actual or perceived) (VHA Directive 1019).
Waiting Areas: Per national VA policy, no waiting area can exclude Veterans or those accompanying Veterans on the basis of gender. You are welcome in all waiting areas at our facilities.
Restrooms: You have the right to use restrooms and other public accommodations that correspond with your self-identified gender, regardless of appearance.
Visitation: Sheridan VA's Visitation Policy allows for a same-sex partner, family member, friend, or other individual to be present with the patient for emotional support during the course of the patient's stay. Same-sex partners are recognized as the patient's family, even if the partners are not legally married.
Advance Directives: Veterans may designate any person as a decision-maker for care, should they become unable to make these decisions themselves. This includes designating a same-sex partner as a surrogate decision-maker. Advance directive agents are chosen by the Veteran and do not need to be biologically related. Please inform staff if you desire to create an Advance Directive.
Documentation in Medical Records: Sheridan VA Health Care System maintains the confidentiality of information about sexual orientation, sexual behavior, and gender identity, as it does with all other private health information. We encourage you to inform your health care provider of your gender identity and sexual orientation so the very best care can be provided. For more information on accessing or making changes to your medical records, please visit the MEDICAL RECORDS PAGE of our website.
Changing Your Name and/or Sex in Your Medical Record: Your name in your medical record will reflect your legal name. You have the right to request that your name and sex be updated as appropriate. There are established procedures for changing your name and sex in your record. For more detailed information on how to do this please contact our Eligibility and Enrollment department at (307) 675-3361.
Concerns and/or Complaints: If you feel you are not being provided with compassionate care at Sheridan VA Health Care System, we encourage you to voice your concerns to your provider and/or our LGBT Veteran Care Coordinator, Patti Alliot at (307) 675-3383. You can also contact our patient advocate at (307) 675-3630.
LGBT Veteran Care Coordinator (VCC) Program
As of March 2016, each VA facility has a local LGBT Veteran Care Coordinator (VCC) who is appointed by their facility leadership. The VCC is responsible for promoting best practices for serving LGBT Veterans and connecting LGBT Veterans to services.
To learn important information about the unique health risks of LGBT Veterans, download these relevant fact sheets. Here you can also find information about relevant services offered by VA.