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  • APTA collects demographic data regarding racial diversity, but ignores gender and sexual diversity
  • In the US, 4.5 percent of adults identified as LGBTQ+
  • In Minnesota, 4.1 percent of adults identified as LGBTQ+


  • Gain an improved understanding of the shared experiences and the potential underlying barriers that practicing and student PTs and PTAs from gender/sexual minorities in Minnesota encounter
  • Results of the study will be used to assist MNPTA task force to improve diversity in PT/PTA education and practice in Minnesota


  • The seven participants were practicing PT/PTAs or student from Minnesota
  • Recruitment through flyer via email and distributed at MNPTA educational events, or personally invited by PI
  • 90 minute online focus groups moderated by a PI
  • Discussed choice of career path, perceived barriers, shared life experiences, and thoughts of improving LGBTQ+ acceptances and equality
  • Groups were audio recorded, de-identified, transcribed, cleaned and then imported into NVIVO 12 software and coded


  • Participants shared similar experiences across multiple aspects of their lives and encountered similar barriers and challenges as student and practicing PT/PTAs in Minnesota
  • Future research should be conducted to explore the solutions proposed by participants and determine if there are other common major themes that exist

Clinical Relevance

  • Important to understand barriers that LBGTQ+ PT/PTAs face in order to address the health disparities that exist in the Physical Therapy Profession in Minnesota
  • Create an environment that is more inclusive and more representative of the growing diversity that exists in physical therapy by putting potential solutions into action
  • Important to have PTs who are educated on the health disparities that exist in LBGTQ+ and uniquely understand their patients' needs



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