Nicole NilesFollow



Second Major

Women’s Studies


Toatley, Sarah

Advisor Department

Honors Program




LGBTQ+; Healthcare; Intersectionality


LGBTQ+ healthcare has made some significant progress in the last few decades, yet countless studies have shown that the American healthcare system still lags behind in equitable healthcare. My project sought to identify the issues that prevent the LGBTQ+ community from receiving quality healthcare, which involved the curation of over twenty academic journal articles for an annotated bibliography, along with a paper discussing these articles.

One of the most important concepts to gender studies is intersectionality. Coined by legal theorist Kimberlé Crenshaw in 1989, intersectionality describes the concept of how one’s individual characteristics, including race, class, and gender, intersect and create overlapping systems of discrimination or disadvantage. To capture the full scope of the inequities surrounding LGBTQ+ healthcare, intersectional identities had to absolutely be accounted for when creating this project.

My paper focuses on several core topics that have shown the most relevance as barriers to LGBTQ+ healthcare. These topics include the education provided for healthcare workers, attitudes held about healthcare by both LGBTQ+ patients and their healthcare providers, the impacts intersectional identities have on LGBTQ+ healthcare, the stigma of HIV/AIDS, the complexities surrounding gender affirming care, and the unique circumstances brought on by COVID-19. This project provides important information on the current state of LGBTQ+ healthcare in the U.S., and offers a useful resource for patients and healthcare providers alike. In order to get to a place of equitable healthcare for all Americans, we must be able to identify and discuss barriers that impact the most vulnerable populations.