Equality and Diversity in a Health and Social Care Setting

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Equality means to make certain that all individuals regardless of their abilities, lifestyle or background, has the same chances in your setting. Diversity means to appreciate the differences of people and respectfully treating the beliefs, values, cultures and lifestyles of other persons. There are five key laws relating to equality and diversity in a health or social care setting which are:

The Equality Act 2010

Equality duties have been established for all government agencies aimed at incorporating the consideration of improving equality in the daily business of all bodies subject to responsibility. This legislation gives individuals with any of the nine specific protected features security opposing discrimination. They include age, disability, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion and belief, sex, gender reassignment, and sexual orientation.

The Human Rights Act 1998

This Act incorporates into domestic law the European Congress on Human Rights (ECHR), which means that all public authorities must regard and protect their privileges. This Act helps to protect our communities’ most vulnerable, including those receiving care and support. This law expounds the central human rights and equality values. The acronym “FREDA” helps somebody to remember what the Act includes: Fairness, Respect, Equality, Dignity and Autonomy.

The Mental Capacity Act 2005

Applies to all persons involved in the care, treatment and support of persons aged 16 years and older living in England and Wales who are unable to make all or some decisions on their own. The MCA aims to protect and restore power to those vulnerable persons lacking capacity. In particular, the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) aimed at helping people lacking the capacity to maintain their freedom, pride and the right to freedom. DoLS assist vulnerable individuals to retain their right to dignity and equality.

The Care Act 2014

Local authorities must: carry out an assessment under the Care Act 2014 of anyone who appears to require care and support, regardless of their likely eligibility for state-funded care. This law provides six key principles to support all work with vulnerable adults. This includes ensuring that adults are given personal support, chosen by them, and have their consent.

The Health and Social Care act 2012

The Health and Social Care Act 2012 introduced the first health inequalities legal duties. It included specific duties for health bodies, including Health Department, Public Health England, Clinical Commissioning Groups, and NHS England, requiring the bodies to take due account of reducing health inequalities among England’s people. The Act has also brought changes to public health functions for local authorities.

Key Areas

  • Creates an independent NHS Board to distribute resources and offer to assign leadership.
  • Increases the powers of GPs to commission services on behalf of their patients.
  • Reinforces the function of the Quality of care Commission.
  • Improves Monitor, the body currently regulating NHS foundation trusts, into an economic regulator to supervise access and competition aspects in the NHS.
  • Splits the number of health organizations to help meet the government’s obligation to cut a third of the cost of NHS administration, as well as the abolition of primary care trusts and tactical health authorities.

The code of conduct for Healthcare Support Workers and Adult Social Care Workers includes the following principles:

  • Work in collaboration
  • Promote and uphold privacy
  • Communicate in an open, and effective way
  • Uphold and promote equality, diversity, and inclusion.
  • dignity, rights, health, and wellbeing
  • Be accountable
  • Strive to improve the quality of care
  • Respect a person’s right to confidentiality and support


Equality and diversity are vital parts of the health and social care. Excellent equality and diversity practices ensures that the services given to individuals are fair and accessible to everybody. They make sure that individuals are equally treated, that people get the dignity and respect they warrant and that their dissimilarities are celebrated. Equality and diversity must not be considered as additional benefits to your health or social care setting but more as entire constituents.

It is important that equality and diversity are at the heart of what you do in a health and social care environment. Your patients and users of the service are individuals. You should always strive to ensure that they meet their diverse needs and ensure equal access to the services you provide. This is especially important for adults in need who are unable to take adequate care of themselves and avoid harm due to their age, disability, or illness.

Encouraging equality and diversity in a place of work is principally concerned with avoiding discrimination. Either this is active or passive. Sometimes your setting can accidentally discriminate against a patient, especially if the adult is vulnerable due to their health, age or disability, so it is essential to be aware of the potential barriers and how to remove them.

Cite this paper

Equality and Diversity in a Health and Social Care Setting. (2021, Jan 16). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/equality-and-diversity-in-a-health-and-social-care-setting/



How do you promote equality and diversity in a health and social care setting?
Provide person-centered care and work in a non-judgemental manner . Employees should be encouraged to value diversity and respect the attributes that make people different. Care plans should be personalised to reflect the likes, dislikes, personal history and beliefs of each individual.
What is an example of diversity in a health and social care setting?
An example of diversity in a health and social care setting could be a group home for individuals with intellectual disabilities that is staffed by people with a variety of backgrounds and life experiences.
Why is diversity important in health and social care settings?
Diversity is important in health and social care settings because it helps ensure that everyone in the community is represented and has access to services. It also helps create a more culturally competent workforce that is better able to meet the needs of a diverse population.
Why is it important to promote equality and diversity in health and social care?
Good equality and diversity practices make sure that the services provided to people are fair and accessible to everyone. They ensure that people are treated as equals, that people get the dignity and respect they deserve and that their differences are celebrated .
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