Eqaulity Analysis (EA)

What is Equality Analysis? (formerly Equality Impact Assessments)

Equality Analysis (EA) is a measuring of outcomes to identify the potential impact of an NHS organisation's policies, services or functions on those community groups or individuals affected by such changes ie its patients, carers and staff. It can help staff provide and deliver excellent services to patients by making sure that these more closely reflect the needs of the community and take due regard of the impacts of key changes around inclusion and fair access to information, services, premise, and employment opportunities.

By carrying out EA, an NHS may also ensure that the services that it provides fulfill the requirements of anti-discrimination and equalities legislation (such as meeting the Equality Duty) and are therefore legally compliant.

The CCG has an Equality Duty to continue to examine our policies, practices, services and functions to ensure they are fair and that none of them create adverse impacts or barriers for protected characteristic groups including: age, gender, gender reassignment, disability, race, sexual orientation, religion or belief, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy maternity and breastfeeding mums.

At Salford CCG we also include carers in all our scrutiny for inclusion work. We want to go beyond the minimum requirements of equality legislation and evidence how we embed social inclusion into our day to day healthcare practices.

This means that we have to scrutinise what we do, how we do it and the decisions we make by means of Equality Analysis.

In 2013 we are reviewing our scrutiny for inclusion process to ensure this continues to be 'fit for purpose'. We will also introduce a rolling programme of EA over the next 12 months to identify potential areas of adverse impact for local protected groups. EA are carried out by CCG (and in some areas by Greater Manchester Commissioning Support Unit or GMCSU) for commissioned and corporate services. CCG continue to review our AoE process to ensure our focus is on achieving practical outcomes for patients and staff, rather than focusing on the AoE process alone.

Equality Analysis provides a structured way of looking at and examining the effects or impact of a proposed or existing policy, practice, service (re) design or function on protected characteristic groups. We can use EA to find out what may be wrong as well as to tell us what is working well. We can find ways of putting things right if needed, by talking and listening to and involving people from across the community and from protected characteristic groups. This will tell us what objectives and targets we need to set to put things right or improve things.

Summary

An EA is a snap shot in time showing how inclusive our services are to protected characteristic groups in our local communities.

EAs are a way of CCG evidencing how it gives 'due regard' to vulnerable people from local protected characteristic groups, in all its planning and decision making process, and from the earliest stages of consideration.

EAs should deliver robust equality outcomes which ultimately drive commissioned services to more closely reflect patient and staff need.

We are currently delivering a targeted training programme for nominated EA Lead staff and are developing a rolling programme of priority EAs for completion.

If you have any questions about EA please contact:

Salford CCG Equality Diversity and Human Rights Consultant Julia Allen juliaallen@nhs.net