How to overcome racism and discrimination to build your career in the NHS

Nursing Standard podcast looks at how black and minority ethnic nurses can progress their careers

Picture shows senior black nurses Nichole McIntosh and Carol Love-Mecrow, who take part in a Nursing Standard podcast
Nicole McIntosh (left) and Carol Love-Mecrow

What is your experience of racism or discrimination, whatever your skin colour?

Have you been labelled ‘defensive’ for standing up for yourself as a black nurse, or stood by silently as a white nurse witnessing a colleague being discriminated against due to their ethnicity?

Personal experiences of racism and microaggression in the NHS

The latest episode of the Nursing Standard podcast explores racism and discrimination in the NHS, and how black and minority ethnic nurses can progress in their careers.

Our podcast guests are two senior black nurses, Nichole McIntosh and Carol Love-Mecrow, who are Health Education England regional heads of nursing and midwifery for London and the Midlands respectively.


They talk to Nursing Standard editor Flavia Munn about their personal experiences of racism and microaggression in the NHS and what everyone can do to tackle this behaviour.

The pair encourage white nurses to listen to understand rather than to respond, and also offer tips to black and minority ethnic nurses on getting ahead in their careers, such as seeking out role models, emulating not imitating, and taking every opportunity.

Recent research by the Nuffield Trust, on behalf of NHS Employers, found Muslim staff are twice as likely as staff of no religion to experience discrimination, while those from an ethnic minority are 27 % less likely than white staff to be ‘very senior managers’.

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