The National Institute of Health is inviting public comment on an unprecedented planned study of LGBT health issues. An insider writes us on how to help:
The Institute of Medicine (IOM), part of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), has been asked by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to conduct a report on LGBT health. Nothing like this has been done in the past, although IOM did do a report on lesbian health at the end of the Clinton administration. There is a period of public comment between now and Feb 1. People should be encouraged to take advantage of this. Vague comments ("We need more services for gay men") won't have much impact. Data-based comments will help, but commonplace, vivid examples of health disparities affecting LGBT folks may get noticed.There will be face-to-face meetings with opportunities for public participation, but they are likely to be DC-based and the dates have not been announced. The report will be used by NIH for planning purposes. It's likely that other federal agencies (CDC, HRSA, SAMHSA) will take notice of its findings and Congress usually is interested in the outcome of these reports.
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