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Caring for LGBTQ+ Veterans and Service-Connected Families: Fundamentals

** 1.0 CE ** How to take action as a nurse to improve your ability to care for LGBTQ+ veterans and Service-connected families

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Caring for LGBTQ+ Veterans and Service-Connected Families: Fundamentals
Caring for LGBTQ+ Veterans and Service-Connected Families: Fundamentals

Time & Location

Jun 29, 2023, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM


About the Event

Learning Objectives: 

  • Describe the cultures of the various branches of the United States Armed Forces
  • Discuss the impact that discriminatory military policies has had on LGBTQ+ veterans’ health
  • Identify at least three actions nurses can take to improve their ability to care for LGBTQ+ veterans and Service-connected families

Course Overview:

At a time when approximately 8% of the US population has ever served in the military and only 1% does so today, few nurses have direct experience in the military. Most veterans receive healthcare from practitioners and health systems outside of the Department of Defense or Department of Veterans Affairs. Drawing on the presenter’s personal and professional experience, this webinar will provide attendees with a fundamental overview of military cultures and how these influence veterans’ health-related behaviors. There is a legacy of negative health issues that LGBTQ+ veterans experience due to the history of discriminatory military policies that once barred their authentic service which should be understood by those nurses caring for this population. Further, the presenter will discuss actionable language and practice approaches that nurses can employ to improve their ability to care for LGBTQ+ veterans and their families.

Meet your hosts: 

Paula M. Neira JD, MSN, RN, CEN, FAAN is originally from Jersey City, New Jersey, and graduated from Regis High School in New York City. A member of the United States Naval Academy Class of 1985, she graduated with distinction from Annapolis in May 1985. A Surface Warfare Officer, she served as a regular and reserve officer including serving in mine warfare combat during Operation Desert Storm. Her military decorations include three Navy Commendation Medals, the Navy Achievement Medal, and the Combat Action Ribbon, as well as numerous unit, campaign, and service awards. After leaving the Navy in 1991, she began her career as a registered nurse. She is certified in emergency nursing and focused her career on adult emergency care and trauma resuscitation. From 2008-2016, Paula served as the Nurse Educator in Emergency Medicine at The Johns Hopkins Hospital. She also served as the co-chair of the Johns Hopkins Transgender Medicine Executive Taskforce. In November 2016, she became the founding Clinical Program Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Transgender Health and served in this role 2016-2022. In March of 2022, she was named as the Johns Hopkins Medicine Program Director of LGBTQ+ Equity and Education in the Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Health Equity.

An attorney and member of the Maryland bar since 2001, Paula was a leader in the repeal of the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy and in the change of military regulations to allow for transgender military service. As part of her role at Hopkins, she lectures nationally on the need for improved transgender cultural awareness and health equity.  In 2015, she made naval history by becoming the first transgender Navy veteran to have her discharge documentation updated to reflect her correct name by order of the Navy. In 2016, the Secretary of the Navy named her to be the co-sponsor of the USNS HARVEY MILK (T-AO-206) and in November 2021, she christened the ship in San Diego. In 2018, she was awarded the GLMA Achievement Award and in 2020, she was inducted as a Fellow into the American Academy of Nursing in recognition of her leadership in advancing diversity and inclusion both in the United States Armed Forces and in healthcare. She is the first United States service academy graduate to achieve this honor in American nursing. Paula and her partner reside in Bowie, Maryland.

Dr. Ali R. Tayyeb is a United States Navy Veteran, Registered Nurse, Educator, artist, and creator, and host of the RN-Mentor podcast. Dr. Tayyeb is currently an adjunct associate professor at the University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Tayyeb’s work and research concentrates around improving access to care and benefits for veterans and advancing social networks to connect and advance nursing issues while facilitating nursing discourse centered around the theory of social contracts.

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