• Friday, December 02, 2022


Health inequalities affecting BAME communities in Calderdale

A generic aerial image showing part of Calderdale.

By: John Greenwood

SOME work-in-progress to address health inequalities affecting BAME communities in Calderdale is starting to have an impact, health partners heard.

Director of Transformation and Partnerships at Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust, Anna Basford, said since April 2020 evidence had emerged about the disproportionate impact the Covid-19 pandemic was having on people from Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities.

Last summer Calderdale Health and Wellbeing Board then backed an action plan with its ten goals and this had been aligned with wider West Yorkshire and Harrogate Partnership planning, also highlighting inequalities in mental health, she said.

Dr Steven Cleasby said although this was progress report, in terms of the challenges it showed the immediacy of the problems.

“Is there evidence we are making an impact already?” he said.

Basford said recommendations were having a positive impact, feedback suggested, for example work being done to support taxi drivers from BAME communities in their workplaces in the borough.

Case studies were being put together for future presentation but the recommendations were an ongoing commitment and issues were not fully resolved.

Another example was inequality data being used in determining clinical treatment, reflecting national guidance, Basford told the board at its latest meeting.

The Calderdale ten point action plan is in three phases and carried out by a range of partners.

The first, “do now”, includes action to identify Covid-19 cases earlier in the communities, ensure they get the support they need, prevent and control it in high risk occupations and homes and raise awareness of how people can best protect themselves and their families.

The second, “as we recover”, includes delivering programmes to address underlying health conditions associated with poorer outcomes from Covid-19, and building resilience in the communities.

The third phase, “future fundamentals”, includes a racially inclusive recovery from Covid, an understanding part partners of the scale of inequalities faced by BAME groups and taking action to address them, building the communities’ confidence and trust in local public services and taking action over discrimination when it is recognised.

West Yorkshire and Harrogate Partnership plan’s key themes are improving safe access to work for ethnic minorities, ensuring the partnership’s leadership is reflective of communities, using information to make sure that services meet different groups’ needs, and reducing inequalities in mental health outcomes by ethnicity.

(Local Democracy Reporting Service)

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