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GP champions LGBT inclusion with Pride in Practice

Published: 20 June 2017 Tags: pride in practice, greater manchester, healthcare By John Walding

Bedford House Medical Centre in Tameside has received a Gold award for excellence in LGBT healthcare. The award is particularly poignant as one of the practices GPs is the stepfather of Martyn Hett who was among the 22 people killed in the bombing at Manchester Arena on May 22.

Since the beginning of the year Dr. Stuart Murray, an accredited GP Trainer in General Practice at Bedford House Medical Centre, along with all staff at the centre have been working with LGBT Foundation’s Primary Care quality assurance service Pride in Practicewhich provides comprehensive training for all practice staff on how to support their lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans patients.

After receiving the training and following up with further assessment and support Dr.Murray has pledged to continue to promote acceptance and understanding of LGBT issues in memory of his step son Martyn.

Speaking to the Manchester Evening News Dr.Murray acknowledged that Martyn ‘was so open about his sexuality, and I think that he helped a lot of his friends to come out and be more accepting of who they are.’

‘It seemed fitting for me to use my job to spread the word as well. I am trying to carry on his message.

‘Across all organisations there is a lot of work to be done.’

Pride in Practice Co-ordinator Andrew Gilliver was due to present the award to Bedford House staff on Tuesday 23rd May but the event at Manchester Arena on 22nd May meant that the presentation was understandably delayed.

Andrew who is also a patient at the practice has long been aware of the staff team’s commitment to LGBT people at Bedford House.

‘Since 2013 I regularly saw a poster promoting support services for lesbian, gay and bisexual people at my local GP surgery. There was also a leaflet in the information rack. I have to say that as a user of this service I was delighted to see such supportive information displayed with all the other useful resources in the GP’s waiting room. It makes so much difference while you’re waiting to go and see your doctor to know that they recognise your existence. I actually thanked my GP and told her at the time how important it was that they had promoted this information. That showed real progress and understanding of the diverse needs of the local community.’

‘It is incredibly rewarding for me now to be able to help Bedford House further increase understanding of these issues with Pride in Practice now being fully trans inclusive.’

Pride in Practice provides comprehensive training for all practice staff across Greater Manchester on how to support their lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans patients thanks to funding from Greater Manchester Health & Social Care Partnership and NHS England.

‘Everyone at LGBT Foundation was incredibly sad on hearing the news about Martyn and although I never had the pleasure of getting to meet him I do feel that as Dr. Murray suggests we have even more motivation to ensure that wherever LGBT people are across Greater Manchester by working together with our primary care services we can all do our bit to strengthen the relationship between primary care staff and their LGBT patients.’

Martyn’s funeral service will be held at Stockport Town Hall on Friday, June 30, from 12 noon, with the service commencing at 12.30pm.

The Doctors and staff at Bedford House will be attending the funeral to pay their last respects and support Dr.Murray and family.

Anyone who would like to celebrate Martyn Hett's life is invited to his funeral.