Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

Promoting equality, diversity, human rights and inclusion is at the heart of everything we do. This leads us to ensure that we commission, redesign and decommission services fairly and that no community or protected group in Cheshire and Merseyside is disproportionately affected.

We work in partnership with providers, voluntary and community sector agencies and other key organisations to ensure that we advance equality of opportunity and meet the requirements of the Equality Act 2010. We embrace equality, diversity and inclusion not just because it is the ethical thing to do, but because it allows us to harness a wide range of experience, ideas and creativity while complying with anti-discrimination legislation.

One of the key principles of the NHS Constitution is that:


"The NHS provides a comprehensive service, available to all irrespective of gender, race, disability, age, sexual orientation, religion, belief, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity or marital or civil partnership status. The service is designed to improve, prevent, diagnose and treat both physical and mental health problems with equal regard. It has a duty to each and every individual that it serves and must respect their human rights. At the same time, it has a wider social duty to promote equality through the services it provides and to pay particular attention to groups or sections of society where improvements in health and life expectancy are not keeping pace with the rest of the population."

Equality objectives

NHS Cheshire and Merseyside's equality objectives focuse on delivering key priorities, including the development of an Equality, Diversity and Inclusion framework and operating model that matches the full ambitions of the Integrated Care Board.

Equality Objectives previously approved in Cheshire and Merseyside's legacy CCGs have been amended. Each of these equality objectives is supported by associated priorities which will be further strengthened through a more detailed plan.

Ultimate responsibility and accountability for advancing equality and addressing inequality rests with the NHS Cheshire and Merseyside Board. The Board will need to provide visible leadership on equality, diversity, and inclusion issues across the system.

Its purpose is to shape the future of health and care – to help improve the access, experiences and health outcomes for all patients and communities, and to support NHS Cheshire and Merseyside to become a more inclusive employer by making full use of the talents of its diverse staff and the communities it serves.

The Equality Objectives are:

  • Make fair, transparent, and accountable commissioning decisions.
  • Improve access and outcomes for patients and communities who experience discrimination and disadvantage.
  • Improve the equality performance of our providers through procurement, monitoring compliance and collaboration.
  • Addressing inequalities (and discrimination) in the workforce so that staff are empowered and able to use their full range of skills and experience to deliver best possible services for patients and the public.

Listening to you

It is important that we listen, respond to, and make every effort to involve individuals from all protected characteristic groups for example young people, older people, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) groups. In Cheshire and Merseyside, we celebrate the diversity of our communities.

It is also important that we listen to other underserved groups such as people with specific health conditions, homeless people, refugees and asylum seekers or people living in deprivation and/or rural communities to make sure we reach a diverse range of people to give them the opportunity to share their views.

We will use equality impact assessments to help us understand which groups may need to be specifically targeted for a programme of work. We will be informed by public health and their needs assessments and evidence on health inequalities.