Evidence from Healthwatch Birmingham presented to the government review ethnic disparities and inequality in the UK, focusing on four areas.

By Healthwatch Birmingham
Consultations 2020

We presented evidence based on our investigation into health inequalities in Birmingham’s Somali community, demonstrating that people from ethnic minority communities often experience:

  • dismissive attitudes from healthcare professionals
  • very long delays in getting a diagnosis and a lack of referral to specialist treatment
  • cultural and language difficulties
  • racism and discrimination
  • lack of a diverse health and social care workforce that reflects the community it serves

We recommended actions to tackle inequalities in the health outcomes of people in different ethnic groups, including:

  • more opportunities for ethnic minority communities to be involved in decision-making processes in health and social care
  • delivering tailored and accessible preventative health information/messages is needed to improve knowledge of conditions (i.e. diabetes, asthma, and high blood pressure), risk factors, access to health services and improved lifestyle choices
  • employing knowledgeable interpreters/translators who are able to explain complex medical information
  • tackling  racism and discrimination, which impact access to health and social care services, quality of care and health outcomes
  • removing cultural and language barriers to information about  health services and communication with health professionals 
  • a more diverse health and social care workforce within services in communities with large ethnic minority groups
  • improving understanding of health and social care and its services in ethnic minority communities 
  • requiring healthcare services and professionals to have linguistic and cultural competence
  • moving away from grouping people under the broad term of BAME

Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities in the UK Download File (pdf 181.07 KB)

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