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Racism is ‘stain’ on NHS for staff and patients, says psychiatry chief

Racism is “a stain on the NHS” and tackling it is key to recruiting and retaining staff, the outgoing president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCP) will warn.

The health service has a moral, ethical and legal duty to do more to stamp out racism, Dr Adrian James is expected to say at the college’s international congress in Liverpool.

He will cite pay gaps, disparities in disciplinary processes and a “glass ceiling” for doctors from minority ethnic backgrounds who want to progress into management positions as problems in the NHS that are linked to racism.

Last month, the NHS Race and Health Observatory, which was formed in 2021 to examine disparities in health and social care based on race, said better anti-racism policies could strengthen the NHS workforce.

The RCP agreed that “better care, training and anti-racist policies” would increase staff numbers in the NHS, and that this would “improve patient experience and save millions of pounds spent annually on addressing racism claims brought by staff, clinicians and patients”.

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Source: The Guardian, 10 July 2023


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