alexa Abstract | Dignity, equality and diversity: an exploration of how discriminatory behaviour of healthcare workers affects patient dignity

Diversity & Equality in Health and Care
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This paper explores dignity within the context of equality and diversity, and examines some of the ways in which discriminatory behaviour of healthcare workers contributes to loss of dignity in healthcare. We argue that dignity is a human right for every individual, but one that has different interpretations and may thus be easily compromised. Healthcare professionals have an ethical and professional duty to promote dignity and to adopt anti-discriminatory behaviour. We argue therefore that a recognition and understanding of diversity and equality, and how these concepts can be applied in healthcare, is essential for the provision of dignity in care. A person-centred approach can support dignity in care, acknowledging and valuing each person’s diversity. We also argue that organisations have a duty to support dignity and equality in care delivery and to recognise and respond to the diversity of their patient populations and workforce.

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Author(s): Lesley Baillie Milika Matiti

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