A national call for innovations to address health inequalities facing LGBT people has been launched.

The Academic Health Science Networks (AHSN) and LGBT Foundation have joined forces to find new ways to address the health inequalities faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT), many of which have been exacerbated by the pandemic.

The call is open to innovations and innovative approaches that are either already in use or in development, including MedTech or digital apps.

The LGBT+ community are often disproportionately affected by poor health and social inequalities, but the AHSN and LGBT Foundation hope innovative approaches will provide people with new ways of accessing health and care.

Innovations chosen as part of this work will be included in a report later in the year, which aims to share best practice more widely and faster in the NHS.

Richard Stubbs, chair of the AHSN Network’s equality and diversity group and chief executive of the Yorkshire and Humber AHSN, said: “From lesbian women facing unconscious bias and assumptions with fertility services, lack of health services available to young trans people; through to increased likelihood of drug and alcohol use and mental health crisis, the full healthcare spectrum is more acute and severe for LGBT+ people.

“By combining the expertise of LGBT Foundation and the reach of the AHSNs, and by amplifying the good work and innovation already being developed, we hope to help change healthcare services for LGBT+ people and continue to serve our communities in an equitable and inclusive way.”

Rob Cookson, deputy chief executive of LGBT Foundation, added: “The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed deep-rooted inequalities for LGBT people and has demonstrated that these inequalities can have horrendous and even fatal consequences.

“There is a huge range of incredible work that is being carried out to address LGBT health inequalities. From volunteer led community groups, to large corporations, there are individuals and organisations across the country undertaking inspiring and innovative work.

“The AHSN Network and LGBT Foundation want to highlight and promote some of this amazing work and help others to learn from, and be inspired by, these examples of great practice.”

Innovators and organisations have until 19 April to submit their entry. You can find out more at ahsnnetwork.com/lgbt.