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Lesbian women and gay men found that nurses often assumed they were heterosexual, which led to feelings of discomfort and insecurity

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Q How do lesbian women and gay men experience nursing care in hospital, and what do they regard as important to communicate about homosexuality and nursing?


Qualitative study.


Uppsala, Sweden.


17 women and 10 men who were 23–65 years of age. They reported 46 nursing experiences as patients and 31 as partners. These nursing experiences included emergency care (n = 8), critical care (n = 5), women’s clinic (n = 11), obstetric care (n = 5), surgery (n = 15), orthopaedic care (n = 4), rehabilitation (n = 7), internal medicine (n = 9), cardiology (n = 3), oncology (n = 5), hospice care (n = 2), and psychiatry (n = 3).


Participants were interviewed for 20–90 minutes about their experiences with nursing care. The interviews were audiotaped and transcribed. They were repeatedly read; responses were classified as positive, negative, or neutral; responses were divided into areas (eg, communication, attitudes, and degree of importance); …

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  • For correspondence: Dr G Röndahl, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden. gerd.rondahl{at}

  • Source of funding: Uppsala County Council.