What does partner status mean?
The diversity and inclusion partners programme supports participating trusts to progress and develop their equality performance and to build capacity in this area. At the same time the programme provides an opportunity for partners to offer advice, guidance and demonstrations of good practice in equality and diversity management to the wider NHS. Partners are supported to achieve this via:
- Continuous improvement around equality and diversity within their own organisation.
- Raising awareness of what constitutes sustainable, outcome-focused improvement in managing equality and diversity across their region.
- Acting as a thermometer by which NHS Employers can determine the key issues facing the wider NHS, so that advice and guidance is relevant and up to date.
- Contributing to the development of emerging good practice and providing a channel for collecting case studies from which others can learn, within the wider context of NHS initiatives.
- Contributing to a broader understanding of equality and diversity, across both the NHS and the wider public sector, in the context of quality, innovation, productivity and disease prevention.
What are the benefits of being a partner?
We work closely with our partners and support them to embed equality and diversity in their organisation. Other key benefits for NHS organisations in becoming a partner include:
- Increased profile of your organisation at network events, conferences and through the NHS Employers website and communications.
- Advice, guidance and assistance from NHS Employers in meeting the minimum requirements of the Equality Act 2010.
- Free access to training, development, coaching and mentoring for the partner lead person on the use of the tools within the programme.
- Opportunities to discuss, network and test out new concepts within the safe environment of partner meetings.
- Opportunity to influence national policy direction.
- In some cases, indirect benefits of NHS Employers’ membership of national forums, such as the Employers network for equality and inclusion, in terms of reduced rates.
Organisations are awarded partner status after they have demonstrated that they are delivering against six measurable criteria:
- improving patient access and experience
- empowered, engaged and well supported staff
- inclusive leadership at all levels
- better health outcomes for all
- demonstration of commitment to the partners programme and benefits the organisation will receive from taking part.
The Diversity and Inclusion Partners for 2016/17 are:
- Avon & Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust
- Barts Health NHS Trust
- Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust
- Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust
- Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
- Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
- Dorset HealthCare University NHS Foundation Trust
- Kettering General Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
- Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust
- Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust
- Lincolnshire Community Health Services
- Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust
- Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation NHS Trust
- North of England Commissioning Support
- Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust
- Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
- South Staffordshire and Shropshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
- South, Central and West Commissioning Support Unit
- University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust
- University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust
- Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
The MERIT consortium
The MERIT consortium is made up of Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, Black Country Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, Dudley and Walsall Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust and Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust. These organisations were awarded joint partners status for 2016/17 and will attend partner meetings to promote partnership working and share good practice with the other partners.