Addressing the Disproportionate Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Sexual and Gender Minority Populations in the United States: Actions Toward Equity

LGBT Health. 2020 Aug-Sep;7(6):279-282. doi: 10.1089/lgbt.2020.0187. Epub 2020 Aug 13.


Sexual and gender minority (SGM) populations may be affected disproportionately by health emergencies such as the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Health professionals must take immediate steps to ensure equitable treatment of SGM populations. These steps are to (1) maintain and increase cultural responsiveness training and preparedness for SGM populations, (2) increase use of sexual orientation and gender identity measures in surveillance, (3) conduct research on the impacts of COVID-19 on SGM populations, and (4) include equity-focused initiatives in disaster preparedness plans. These actions toward equity would begin to allow for our current health system to care more appropriately for SGM populations.

Keywords: COVID-19; gender identity; health disparities; intersectionality; minority stress; sexual orientation.

MeSH terms

  • COVID-19
  • Coronavirus Infections / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Health Equity / organization & administration*
  • Health Status Disparities*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pandemics*
  • Pneumonia, Viral / epidemiology*
  • Sexual and Gender Minorities / statistics & numerical data*
  • United States / epidemiology