Appropriate questions.

  1. 0
    Is it an appropriate question for a Doctors office to ask your sexual preference?

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  2. 9 Comments...

  3. 4
    If you're a patient, yes.

    If you're an employee/applicant, absolutely not.
  4. 0
    Quote from Turd Ferguson
    If you're a patient, yes.

    If you're an employee/applicant, absolutely not.

    Ditto........as a patient they need to know so they can screen your for different health risks

    as an employee is against the law.
  5. 0
    Quote from Toradol
    Is it an appropriate question for a Doctors office to ask your sexual preference?
    I think it would be better to ask if the patient engages in any high risk sexual behaviors, and give examples if needed. I always appreciate a clinician asking if I have any concerns or questions about sexual functioning/health. To be honest I've never been asked about my sexual preference, I'm not sure how I would react. My concern is that this is a permanant and now mostly electronic record.
    For people who do not want their sexual preference on record, I would consider telling the questioner that this is not a question you feel comfortable answering.
  6. 3
    Quote from nola1202
    I think it would be better to ask if the patient engages in any high risk sexual behaviors, and give examples if needed. I always appreciate a clinician asking if I have any concerns or questions about sexual functioning/health. To be honest I've never been asked about my sexual preference, I'm not sure how I would react. My concern is that this is a permanant and now mostly electronic record.
    For people who do not want their sexual preference on record, I would consider telling the questioner that this is not a question you feel comfortable answering.
    Agreed. Plus, you are not likely to get accurate answers about sexual preference. Many people do not want that information out there. You are much more likely to get pertinent info if the question is framed in specific medical terms and does not sound like an intrusion of personal privacy!
  7. 2
    Quote from nola1202
    I think it would be better to ask if the patient engages in any high risk sexual behaviors, and give examples if needed. I always appreciate a clinician asking if I have any concerns or questions about sexual functioning/health. To be honest I've never been asked about my sexual preference, I'm not sure how I would react. My concern is that this is a permanant and now mostly electronic record.
    For people who do not want their sexual preference on record, I would consider telling the questioner that this is not a question you feel comfortable answering.
    High risk sexual behaviors are okay on a permanent medical record, but sexual preference is not? I agree that assessing high risk behaviors is important, but I think it's also important for a provider to ask sexual preference.


    Gay or lesbian does not equate high risk; but as a provider it's important to know. For exame, it's a waste of time to introduce or educate a lesbian on birth control. Gays, lesbians, transgender and bisexuals have some different health risks than their hetero counterparts, and part of treating clients appropriately is knowing their sexual orientationandpreference.
    LaurenBoog and elkpark like this.
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    I wonder if this is connected to the new JC standards for "patient & family centered care". They specifically require collection of information about ethnicity, preferred language, gender preference, etc. If the doc is part of a large hospital-based medical group, this may very well be the case.
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    I also just wanted to add that I worked for several years in a women's health office that was well known among the lesbian community as accepting and supportive. While some people may have lied or felt uncomfortable with the question, I suspect most were honest. I know some were relieved to have preference neutral language on the intake forms and to have their orientation treated as a matter of course, not as something strange or weird.

    Questions in the physician's office are going to sometimes be private and occasionally of an uncomfortable nature, but that doesn't mean they are invalid or improper.
    Chin up likes this.
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    I work at a physician's office and we have started using electronic health records. From what our physicians tell us we have to fill out "smart forms" to report to the government. They have some very personal questions including your sexual oreintation, how often you have relations, and what contraception is used, if any. It goes a little too far for government reporting in my opinion.
    I_OYVEY likes this.
  11. 1
    Quote from lillymom
    I work at a physician's office and we have started using electronic health records. From what our physicians tell us we have to fill out "smart forms" to report to the government. They have some very personal questions including your sexual oreintation, how often you have relations, and what contraception is used, if any. It goes a little too far for government reporting in my opinion.
    What is so different and so important that was not important 20 years ago. More people are out of the closet and that is it. I am straight, that is not anybody's business, how many times a week I have sex, ditto, you already know what kind of birth control I use, you write the script. Now that we are fully in the middle of the computer age everything seems to be everyone's business. It is not just health care it is everywhere somebody wanting to know something that is either inappropriate or none of their business. The older I get the more closed mouth I get.
    rn/writer likes this.


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