Difference, Diversity and Inclusivity:

Conversations that help people tell their stories, enrich their sense of self and heal

Socialisation is the process by which medical students transform into doctors. This involves the codification of behaviours consistent with the cultural identity of doctors within society. Plus, it is not unique to medicine, at NHS Practitioner Health we also see the effects of socialisation within dentistry, nursing and the allied health professions.

Socialisation can serve both individuals and organisations well. For example, clear hierarchy is incredibly useful in an emergency and the duties of a doctor can help guide conversations around professional expectations.

However, as Dame Clare Gerada, Medical Director of NHS Practitioner Health, points out in her acclaimed book ‘Behind the White Coat’, socialisation comes with costs. This transformation can lead clinicians to feel a need to hide their humanity and vulnerabilities, which can contribute to them not seeking help when unwell.

Other costs of this process can be the denial of individuality and the exclusion or mistreatment of colleagues with perceived, or projected, differences. For example:

  •   A clinician with dyslexia who feels inadequate, or different, to their peers resulting in low self-esteem.
  •   An overseas-trained doctor who is trying to process whether they are being treated differently by colleagues and patients.

Differences can take multiple forms making an inclusive list an almost impossible task. In addition, people often experience multiple different differences within, or projected onto, them.

Many NHSPH patient stories contain lived experiences of feeling or being treated as different. This experience of difference can be intrinsic to poor mental health, but the exploration of this can be the route to their healing and differences are often part of their strengths.

NHSPH believes that all clinicians should be treated fairly and equally. We also believe that individuality should be celebrated, and diversity within our workforce acknowledged for the value and advantage it brings.

By acknowledging peoples’ humanity, individuality and vulnerability, we can start conversations that may protect, heal and enable colleagues to seek the help they need. And, starting and continuing these conversations, is exactly what this webpage hopes to do.

Click on the links below to hear Paul Deemer, Head of Diversity and Inclusion at NHS Providers, expand on this further. In addition, we have provided the hyperlinks to the GMC Equality Board, the BMAs’ Diversity & inclusion Department and the NHS Providers Resources on Race Equality and Inclusion.

The BMA’s team of specialist employment advisers are here to help members with all your queries and concerns in any aspect of your working life, from pay and contracts to discrimination. You can find out more about the services we provide to members here 

GMC Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Forum          NHS Providers: Racial Equality & inclusivity 

Interveiw with Mr Paul Deemer, Head of Diversity & Inclusion at NHS Employers and Dr Kate MT (M​tandabari) NHS PH

Mr Paul Deemer, Head of Diversity & Inclusion at NHS Employers

Introducing his role, NHS Employers and what made him chose this pathway.


Mr Paul Deemer, Head of Diversity & Inclusion at NHS Employers and Dr Kate MT, Clinician at NHSPH

Head of Diversity & Inclusion at NHS Employers and Dr Kate MT, Clinician at NHSPH Discuss what is an inclusive organisation and how we can define difference. Includes case examples from NHSPH. Specific differences considered here: socioeconomic, age, unseen, physical & mental health.


Mr Paul Deemer, Head of Diversity & Inclusion at NHS Employers and Dr Kate MT, Clinician at NHSPH

Discuss how to build an inclusive organisation, the e ffects of significant events analysis, bias in recruitment and promotion plus ways to mitigate discrimination. Specific di fference considered here: ethnicity.