Rainbow Badge Launch Attendees Photo
Pictured at the launch of the Rainbow badge initiative: (left to right),Ms Anne Quinn, Clinical Nurse Specialist Paediatric Diabetes, Ms Margie Sheehan, Paediatric Co-ordinator, University of Limerick, School of Medicine, Ms Linda Fahy, Business Manager, Maternal and Child Health Directorate, Ms Verena Tarpey, CEO, GOSHH, Dr Sean Kelleher, SpR, Paediatrics, Ms Catherine Corbett, GOSHH, Ms Sarah Nash, Medical Secretary UHL, Professor Clodagh O’Gorman, Consultant Paediatric Endocrinologist, Children’s Ark, UHL & Foundation Chair & Professor of Paediatrics, University of Limerick School of Medicine, Ms Alison McCaffrey, Advanced Nurse Practitioner, Paediatric Diabetes.
Monday, 4 March 2024

The Department of Paediatrics launched the Rainbow Badge on Friday 9th February from 1:00 – 3:00pm.

The event was held in CERC (Clinical Education and Research Centre), UHL, and was open to healthcare professionals and students in the hospital group, with options for in-person and virtual attendance.

Professor Clodagh O’Gorman, Consultant General Paediatrician at UHL explained why the initiative is important in her opening comments:

“Young people who identify as LGBTQI+ experience additional emotional and psychological stresses when compared to non LGBTQI+ youth.  Many people still feel afraid to disclose their sexual or gender identity - being unable to do so often increases their risk of physical and mental health problems. At the Children’s Ark, we want to provide a safe space where the young people using our service feel comfortable discussing any issues relating to their sexuality.

The Children’s Ark is the first service at UL Hospitals Group to take part in the HSE Rainbow Badge initiative, however, it is anticipated that this initiative will be rolled out to services across entire group.”

Over 30 people attended the launch.

Speakers on the day were:

Dr Sean Kelleher SpR in Paediatrics,

Dr Kelleher’s talk, entitled ‘Rainbow badge & LGBTQI + inclusion in a children’s hospital department’ explored how the HSE Rainbow Badge initiative is a way for HSE staff to demonstrate that they are aware of the issues that LGBTI people can face when accessing healthcare.

Ms Verena Tarpey CEO of GOSHH (Gender, Orientation, Sexual Health, HIV), reflected on the breadth of sexual health services GOSHH provides throughout the Mid-West.

The event was approved for CPD by the RCPI.

There was a Q&A session at the end where attendees were invited to share their thoughts, followed by closing comments from Professor Clodagh O’Gorman.