Providing culturally appropriate care for all is core to health equality and patient-centred care. It demands a diverse professional workforce and leadership team that reflects the constituents of the general population and patients. Pre-registration (on-course) education plays an intrinsic role in creating an inclusive professional culture. However, across the UK and internationally, the differential attainments between White and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) students across Health Schools is evident. Disparities in attainment in higher education (HE) have societal repercussions and contribute to labour market inequalities and societal injustice. In the UK, the NHS BAME staff are less likely to be promoted to senior positions.
Insufficient research and anecdotal reports suggest that other socio-cultural determinants, such as gender, disability, LGBTQ identity are also contributing factors for differential achievements in educational and professional contexts. The causes and explanations for this remain somewhat elusive, and under-researched. Our team’s vision is to establish a network with a sustainable, coherent and collaborative approach to (i) research equality and diversity in healthcare education, (ii) translate research into practice, (iii) devise innovative interventions and (vi) evaluation (see diagram below), aiming to transforming future healthcare culture through evidence-based changes embedded in undergraduate and post-registration professional education.
Reader in Clinical Communication and Cultural Competency
Professor of Medical Sociology in Rheumatology and Medical Education