Lack of diversity in healthcare leadership


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A study of more than 3000 health care leaders in Canada found that while gender parity was present, racialized executives were substantially under-represented. Diversity among health care leaders in Canada: a cross-sectional study of perceived gender and race was published in CMAJ. It found that at the ministry level fewer than 7 percent of health care leaders were racialized.

The representation gap between racialized executives in healthcare and the racial demographics of the population it serves ranged from a low of 7.3% for Prince Edward Island to a high of 27.5% for Manitoba. The gap was highest in geographic locations with a greater percentage of racialized residents.

On this episode, Drs. Omole and Bigham speak with the lead author of the study Anjali Sergeant, a final year medical student at McMaster University. She describes how researchers determined race, compares results in different parts of the country and discusses how closely the results of the study reflect what she is seeing in her medical school cohort.

Drs Omole and Bigham also speak with Anna Greenberg, the Chief Regional Officer, Toronto and East for Ontario Health. Ms. Greenberg is also the agency’s Executive Lead for Equity, Inclusion, Diversity, and Anti-Racism. She discusses the efforts her agency is making to address this disparity. She also explains why it is important for healthcare leaders to ask themselves, “Why does this matter?”

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