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A large proportion of doctors in certain EU member states still view homosexuality as a disease, a report has revealed.

The recent study by FRA reveals that in countries such as Bulgaria, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Poland, Romania and Slovakia, medical professionals spoke of “catching” homosexuality. In Romania in particular, over half of the doctors referred to homosexuality as a disorder.

In one response, from a Romanian nurse, LGBT people were described as “plague stricken.”

It was also found that the majority of healthcare providers “lack awareness” on trans rights issues.

Michael O’Flaherty, director of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights, said that this report highlights the work that still needs to be done in the fight for LGBT equality.

“LGBT people have the same rights to education, to healthcare and to be treated equally as everyone else. They too have the right to live their life in dignity, free from fear and discrimination,” he said.

“FRA’s latest findings reveal how some doctors still wrongly believe that homosexuality is a disease. They underscore the need for the EU and its Member States to empower public officials to act on their duty to deliver high quality service to help end the suffering many LGBT people experience.”

The report recognised the positive impact of several EU initiatives, but stressed the need for greater professional training to sensitise public servants to the needs of LGBT people.

You can read the FRA’s full report here.

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