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Lesbian and bisexual women's experiences of health care: "Do not say, 'husband', say, 'spouse'".
J Clin Nurs. 2020 Jan; 29(1-2):94-106.JC

Abstract

AIMS AND OBJECTIVES

To describe the experiences and wishes of lesbian and bisexual women concerning health care in Finland.

BACKGROUND

Sexual orientation is a personal aspect of identity and also an important aspect of holistic health care. Lesbian and bisexual women have unmet health needs. The way that healthcare personnel encounter lesbian and bisexual women affects whether they disclose their sexual orientation.

DESIGN

Qualitative inductive survey.

METHODS

The research data for this study were collected in spring 2018 using an electronic survey (n = 22). The data were analysed using inductive content analysis. The research report has been checked using COREQ checklist, see Appendix S1.

RESULTS

The research data were divided into two main domains: experiences and wishes. Women described health care as being heteronormative. They had both good and bad experiences, and their own poor experiences and those of others had a negative impact on their utilisation of healthcare services. Women had apprehensions about encountering stereotyping in health care and did not always disclose their orientation, even though recognising it would be integral to the provision of holistic health care. Lesbian and bisexual women wished that health care would refrain from heteronormativity, acknowledge issues that were important to them and engage with them without any prejudgement. They also wished healthcare environments would be improved to reflect an open acceptance of sexual minorities and also co-operate with sexual minority organisations.

CONCLUSIONS

Women had conflicting experiences. Heteronormativity was seen as an obstacle for holistic health care. Women hoped health care would collaborate with the third sector.

RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE

Sexual diversity should be acknowledged and better communicated to patients. Women hoped personnel would have the understanding to treat them in the same professional way as any other patients, but with expertise specific to their needs, for example in sexual health guidance.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Faculty of Social Sciences, Nursing Science, Tampere University, Tampere, Finland.Faculty of Social Sciences, Nursing Science, Tampere University, Tampere, Finland. South Ostrobothnia Hospital District, Seinäjoki, Finland.Faculty of Social Sciences, Nursing Science, Tampere University, Tampere, Finland.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

31509294

Citation

Soinio, Jenni Ija Ilona, et al. "Lesbian and Bisexual Women's Experiences of Health Care: "Do Not Say, 'husband', Say, 'spouse'"." Journal of Clinical Nursing, vol. 29, no. 1-2, 2020, pp. 94-106.
Soinio JII, Paavilainen E, Kylmä JPO. Lesbian and bisexual women's experiences of health care: "Do not say, 'husband', say, 'spouse'". J Clin Nurs. 2020;29(1-2):94-106.
Soinio, J. I. I., Paavilainen, E., & Kylmä, J. P. O. (2020). Lesbian and bisexual women's experiences of health care: "Do not say, 'husband', say, 'spouse'". Journal of Clinical Nursing, 29(1-2), 94-106. https://doi.org/10.1111/jocn.15062
Soinio JII, Paavilainen E, Kylmä JPO. Lesbian and Bisexual Women's Experiences of Health Care: "Do Not Say, 'husband', Say, 'spouse'". J Clin Nurs. 2020;29(1-2):94-106. PubMed PMID: 31509294.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Lesbian and bisexual women's experiences of health care: "Do not say, 'husband', say, 'spouse'". AU - Soinio,Jenni Ija Ilona, AU - Paavilainen,Eija, AU - Kylmä,Jari Pekka Olavi, Y1 - 2019/10/11/ PY - 2019/01/21/received PY - 2019/08/13/revised PY - 2019/09/03/accepted PY - 2019/9/12/pubmed PY - 2020/2/11/medline PY - 2019/9/12/entrez KW - patient satisfaction KW - professional-patient relations KW - sexual and gender minorities KW - sexual health KW - women's health SP - 94 EP - 106 JF - Journal of clinical nursing JO - J Clin Nurs VL - 29 IS - 1-2 N2 - AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: To describe the experiences and wishes of lesbian and bisexual women concerning health care in Finland. BACKGROUND: Sexual orientation is a personal aspect of identity and also an important aspect of holistic health care. Lesbian and bisexual women have unmet health needs. The way that healthcare personnel encounter lesbian and bisexual women affects whether they disclose their sexual orientation. DESIGN: Qualitative inductive survey. METHODS: The research data for this study were collected in spring 2018 using an electronic survey (n = 22). The data were analysed using inductive content analysis. The research report has been checked using COREQ checklist, see Appendix S1. RESULTS: The research data were divided into two main domains: experiences and wishes. Women described health care as being heteronormative. They had both good and bad experiences, and their own poor experiences and those of others had a negative impact on their utilisation of healthcare services. Women had apprehensions about encountering stereotyping in health care and did not always disclose their orientation, even though recognising it would be integral to the provision of holistic health care. Lesbian and bisexual women wished that health care would refrain from heteronormativity, acknowledge issues that were important to them and engage with them without any prejudgement. They also wished healthcare environments would be improved to reflect an open acceptance of sexual minorities and also co-operate with sexual minority organisations. CONCLUSIONS: Women had conflicting experiences. Heteronormativity was seen as an obstacle for holistic health care. Women hoped health care would collaborate with the third sector. RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE: Sexual diversity should be acknowledged and better communicated to patients. Women hoped personnel would have the understanding to treat them in the same professional way as any other patients, but with expertise specific to their needs, for example in sexual health guidance. SN - 1365-2702 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/31509294/Lesbian_and_bisexual_women's_experiences_of_health_care:_"Do_not_say_'husband'_say_'spouse'"_ L2 - https://doi.org/10.1111/jocn.15062 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -