Does difference matter? Diversity and human rights in a hospital workplace.Edit

Sulman J, Kanee M, Stewart P, Savage D.

Soc Work Health Care. 2007;44(3):145-59.

This paper focuses on diversity within the hospital workplace, stating that it mirrors the diversity of the city. After a literature review regarding diversity in the workplace, with most of the articles coming from business sources as opposed to clinical sources, the authors describe an urban Canadian teaching hospital in Toronto, “one of the most multicultural cities in the world.” Much of the business resources stated that diversity within the workplace can be both a positive and negative thing, depending on the setting. Others stated that diversity may be greatest at the lower levels of the organization, but almost non-existent in the top. Also, they states that diversity training programs alone are not sufficient, but rather “organizations must also implement management and human resource policies and practices that inculcate cultures of mutual learning and cooperation.” The authors go on to describe the hospital’s Diversity and Human Rights Program, which is in its early stages of development. Some of the changes that have already been made include expanding the interpretation services to better facilitate communication between physicians and patients. The next step includes a focus group to act as an ongoing quality assurance process to monitor the effectiveness of initiatives and explore other areas for improvement. Because this program is in its early stages of development, not much has been recorded regarding the impact of the changes on patient care.

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