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NHS: diversity will be central to changing culture

DIVERSITY: Individual NHS organisation will set their own targets for BAME recruitment

LEADERS IN the NHS have said that diversity will be central to changing the culture within the organisation.

In a new publication, The NHS Long Term Plan, released yesterday, representatives in the health service outlined how they will work to improve diversity and equality.

“The NHS draws on a remarkably rich diversity of people to provide care to our patients. But we fall short in valuing their contributions and ensuring fair treatment and respect. Through the Workforce Race Equality Standard, we are making progress in addressing these issues from the perspective of BAME [black, Asian and minority ethnic] staff,” the publication states.

NHS England will invest an extra £1 million a year to extend its work to achieve its goals in relation to improving the working environment for BAME staff to 2025.

Each NHS organisation will set its own target for BAME recruitment across in relation to both its leadership team and the wider workforce by 2022, meaning that senior teams and boards will be responsible for ensuring that their workforces closely represent the diverse makeup of the local communities they serve.

A separate initiative, the Workforce Disability Equality Standard, will be devised to improve the representation of and working environment for disabled employees.

The long-term plan also recognises the contribution of Caribbean people to the NHS and says that in the short-term future there will be a continuation of overseas recruitment.

It states: “From the inception of the NHS 70 years ago, patients have benefited from the
expertise, commitment and compassion of staff who have come to work in the NHS. The
Windrush anniversary this year was an important opportunity to celebrate the contribution of staff from the Caribbean.”

In the longer-term, the NHS plans to recruit and train more people from the UK.

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