Media release

Support needed for LGBTQIASB+ community

AMA Queensland has called on the State Government to fund a voluntary register to allow bereaved family and friends to notify fatal suicides in the LGBTQIASB+ community.

The register is one of a suite of measures to improve health outcomes for the community in the AMA Queensland Budget Submission 2024-25.

“Members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual, sistergirl and brotherboy (LGBTQIASB+) community face unique barriers and challenges in accessing healthcare that is culturally safe and appropriate for their needs,” AMA Queensland President Dr Maria Boulton said.

“Recent Australian research shows more than 80 per cent of young LGBTQIASB+ people experienced suicidal ideation, attempted suicide or self-harmed.

“This community faces ongoing discrimination in healthcare settings by all practitioner groups and the broader public. Along with outdated institutional processes, this contributes to poorer health outcomes within the community, including in mental health.

“We do not know the true extent of suicide within this community, as police reports and coronial findings rely on family or friends knowing and disclosing their loved one’s sexual or gender identity.

“Without this data, we do not know the full extent of the issue. We cannot work with the community and government effectively to develop measures to enhance mental health outcomes and keep people healthy and alive.

“We are calling for funding and reform to enable a voluntary register to allow surviving partners, family, friends and clinicians to notify suicides to a suitable body – a university or the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare – for liaison with the Coroner.

“We are also calling for legislative amendments to allow doctors to release information to the register, with family approval.

“We urge governments and media to be considered and sensitive in their responses to all reports and policy proposals concerning the LGBTQIASB+ community, and for all health organisations and peak medical bodies to consult with and include community representatives.

“AMA Queensland has established a LGBTQIASB+ Working Group to advocate for equity in health for all patients and medical practitioners.

“Our profession must do better, with the most recent Medical Training Survey showing workplace discrimination and bullying of non-binary medical trainees.

“In Queensland, more than half of reported perpetrators were other health practitioners, including senior medical staff, nurses and midwives. The majority of non-binary trainees who experienced mistreatment indicated they did not report incidents as they believed nothing would be done.

“This is an indication of the lack of resources and support available for non-binary staff in the workplace, and a lack of respect and recognition for non-binary colleagues.”

The Budget Submission also calls for LGBTQIASB+ representation on key research and health bodies, including the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and Australian Health Ethics Committee (AHEC), and inclusion in Chapter 4 of the NHMRC’s Ethics Statement.

It further calls for LGBTQIASB+ academic and consumer representation on the Australian Medical Council, including the establishment of a Committee for Diverse Gender, Sex Characteristics and Sexuality to advise on relevant curricula and accreditation standards.

The AMA Queensland Budget Submission 2024-25 can be read here.


  • LGBTQIASB+ communities have been identified as priority populations under the National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Agreement, and for data development as part of the National Suicide and Self-Harm Monitoring System.
  • Under the agreement, governments have a responsibility to support priority populations, who may be at higher risk of mental ill health and suicide due to vulnerability caused by social, economic and environmental circumstances.
  • La Trobe University’s April 2024 Rainbow Realities report found more than four-fifths of young LGBTQIASB+ people reported having ever experienced suicidal ideation, attempted suicide or self-harmed, among other themes covering mental health and suicidality; income inequality, housing and experiences of homelessness; discrimination and abuse; family violence and sexual assault; alcohol and other drugs; general health care; and more.
  • 17 May was the International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia, Intersexism and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT), marking 17 May 1990 when the World Health Organisation removed homosexuality from the Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems.

Contact: AMA Queensland Media: +61 419 735 641   

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