Doctors want Queensland to set up LGBTQIA+ suicide register

AMA Queensland President Dr Maria Boulter
Images: AMA Queensland (front), Brisbane City Counil (back)

The Australian Medical Association Queensland has called on the state government to fund a voluntary register to allow bereaved family and friends to notify suicides in the LGBTQIA+ Sistergirl Brotherboy community.

The state’s peak body for doctors made the call in a submission ahead of the state budget next month.

“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 (pictured) 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,” Dr Boulton said.

“Along with outdated institutional processes, this contributes to poorer health outcomes within the community, including in mental health.”

Dr Boulton warned that we “don’t know the true extent of suicide” in the community.

“Police reports and coronial findings rely on family or friends knowing and disclosing their loved one’s sexual or gender identity,” she said.

“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’re calling for funding and reform to enable a voluntary register. [It would] 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’re also calling for legislative amendments to allow doctors to release information to the register, with family approval.”

AMA Queensland: ‘Our profession must do better’

It’s one of a suite of measures AMA Queensland has called for to improve health outcomes for the community.

Dr Boulton said a new LGBTQIASB+ Working Group is pushing for equity for all patients and practitioners.

“The most recent Medical Training Survey showed workplace discrimination and bullying of non-binary medical trainees,” she said.

“Our profession must do better.

“In Queensland, more than half of reported perpetrators were other health practitioners. This includes 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 indicates a 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 2024-25 Queensland Budget will be released on June 11, 2024.

If you need someone to talk to, help is available from QLife on 1800 184 527 or online at and Lifeline on 13 11 14, Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800, or beyondblue on 1300 22 4636.

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Jordan Hirst
Jordan Hirst

Jordan Hirst is an experienced journalist and content creator with a career spanning over a decade at QNews. Since 2012, the Brisbane local has covered an enormous range of topics and subjects in-depth affecting the LGBTIQA+ community, both in Australia and overseas. Today, the Brisbane-based journalist covers everything from current affairs, politics and health to sport and entertainment.

QNews, Brisbane Gay, App, Gay App, LGBTI, LGBTI News, Gay Australia

1 Comment

  1. Paul
    22 May 2024

    No Queensland QNews yet on repealing the archaic section 45A on legally allowing gay and single discrimination regarding IVF treatment, but I digress. It is also part of a ART registration scheme that Queensland will adopt by the end of the year or just before the state elections.

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