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DiversityNursing Blog

New Report Finds a ‘Diversity Dividend’ at Work

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Thu, Jan 22, 2015 @ 02:29 PM


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Is there such a thing as a diversity dividend?

A new study of 366 public companies in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Brazil, Mexico and Chile by McKinsey & Co., a major management consultancy, found a statistically significant relationship between companies with women and minorities in their upper ranks and better financial performance as measured by earnings before interest and tax, or EBIT.

The findings could further fuel employers’ efforts to increase the ranks of women and people of color for executive suites and boardrooms — an issue where some progress is being made, albeit slowly.

McKinsey researchers examined the gender, ethnic and racial makeup of top management teams and boards for large concerns across a range of industries as of 2014.  Then, they analyzed the firms’ average earnings before interest and taxes between 2010 and 2013. They collected but didn’t analyze other financial measures such as return on equity.

Businesses with the most gender diverse leadership were 15% more likely to report financial returns above their national industry median, the study showed. An even more striking link turned up at concerns with extensive ethnic diversity. Those best performers were 35% more likely to have financial returns that outpace their industry, according to the analysis. The report did not disclose specific companies.

Highly diverse companies appear to excel financially due to their talent recruitment efforts, strong customer orientation, increased employee satisfaction and improved decision making, the report said.  Those possible factors emerged from prior McKinsey research about diversity.

McKinsey cited “measurable progress” among U.S. companies, where women now represent about 16% of executive teams — compared with 12% for U.K. ones and 6% for Brazilian ones.  But American businesses don’t see a financial payoff from gender diversity “until women constitute at least 22% of a senior executive team,’’ the study noted.  (McKinsey tracked 186 U.S. and Canadian firms.)

The study marks the first time “that the impact of ethnic and gender diversity on financial performance has been looked at for an international sample of companies,’’ said Vivian Hunt, a co-author, in an interview.  Yet “no company is a high performer on both ethnic diversity and on gender,’’ she reported.

And “very few U.S. companies yet have a systematic approach to diversity that is able to consistently achieve a diverse global talent pool,” Ms. Hunt added.

McKinsey has long tracked workplace diversity. A 2007 study, for instance, uncovered a positive relationship between corporate performance and the elevated presence of working women in European countries such as the U.K., France and Germany.


Topics: jobs, work, gender, workplace, management, minorities, recruitment, report, companies, employer, employee, gender diversity, ethnic diversity, diversity, ethnic, career, race

Mentoring project aims to increase minorities in medicine

Posted by Alycia Sullivan

Fri, Jun 14, 2013 @ 11:00 AM


A Web-based mentoring service launched in August 2012 has attracted 400 active users in its effort to help underrepresented minorities pursue careers in medicine.

The project, DiverseMedicine Inc., allows users to request a personal mentor to answer questions through the website’s instant messaging or video chat functions. High school, college and medical students also use discussion forums to cover topics such as admissions testing and residency applications.

The need for the service is great, say organizers of the project, which is open to all students online (link). Seven percent of medical school faculty are black, Hispanic or Native American, says the Assn. of American Medical Colleges. The share of medical students from underrepresented minority groups is about 15%, a figure that has not budged much since 2001.

Closing the gap

Courtesy|unlim|free|mug|photo|100x150|“One of the main reasons why there are so few minorities in the field of medicine is because of the mentoring gap. If nobody’s there to tell you how to get into medical school, you’re not going to get in,” said Dale O. Okorodudu, MD, the project’s founder and a senior resident at Duke University School of Medicine’s internal medicine residency program in Durham, N.C. Too many students do not get advice about postbaccalaureate premedical programs or health-related master’s degrees that can aid their chances of medical school admission, said Cedric Bright, MD. He sits on the project’s board of directors and is assistant dean of admissions at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine.

“This online component … provides a venue for folks to realize that there are role models out there that they don’t see that often,” Dr. Bright said. The American Medical Association is working to develop a LinkedIn-style mentoring site for medical students and residents to connect with practicing physicians.

Source: amednews

Topics: minorities, DiverseMedicine Inc, medical careers, physicians

Diversity in Nursing

Posted by Alycia Sullivan

Fri, Mar 01, 2013 @ 01:49 PM

By: Mark E. Dixon

The nursing shortage isn't going away, but a federal commission had discovered one positive side effect - the shortage has helped make nursing one of the most ethnically diverse of the healthcare professions.

That's relatively speaking, of course.

Nurses are 50 percent more likely than physicians to be minorities, according to the final report of the Sullivan Commission on Diversity in the Healthcare Workforce.

Even so, Blacks, Hispanics and American Indians together total only 9 percent of nurses, despite representing about 25 percent of the U.S. population. By comparison, only 6 percent of physicians are minorities.

Minorities make up about 10 percent of nursing baccalaureate faculties and 4.2 percent of medical school professors. Nurse educators are more than twice as likely to be members of a minority group as are medical school professors. 

The problem with a disproportionately white healthcare workforce is that it cannot adequately serve a population that is increasingly non-white, according to the commission report.

"Diversity in the health workforce will strengthen cultural competence throughout the health system," the commission said. "Cultural competence profoundly influences how health professionals deliver healthcare."

According to the commission, language barriers in particular are a critical issue; 20 percent of Americans speak a language other than English at home.

Minority groups receive poorer quality healthcare and experience higher mortality rates from heart disease, HIV/AIDS, diabetes, mental health and other illnesses. Minority children are more likely to die from leukemia than white children. 

An increase of more than 20,000 minority nurses is needed to increase their proportion of the nursing workforce by 1 percent.

By the middle of this century, the U.S. population could be more than 50 percent nonwhite, according to the commission's report.

Recommended Strategies

Established in 2003, the Sullivan Commission was formed to recommend strategies to improve access to care and dismantle barriers to health professions' education.

Chaired by former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Louis W. Sullivan, the 15-member commission consists of experts from the health, higher education, business and legal arenas.

The Sullivan Commission's findings were endorsed by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, whose president, Jean E. Bartels, PhD, RN, called on legislators, nursing practice leaders and nurse educators to implement the commission's recommendations.

Bartels said: "National nursing organizations, the federal Division of Nursing, hospital associations, nursing philanthropies, and other stakeholders within the healthcare community agree that recruiting under-represented groups into nursing is a priority for the profession and an important step toward addressing the nursing shortage."

Commission recommendations included:

· Health profession schools should hire diversity program managers and develop plans to ensure institutional diversity.

· Colleges and universities should provide an array of support services to minority students, including mentoring, test-taking skills and application counseling. 

· Schools granting baccalaureate nursing degrees should provide "bridging programs" that help graduates of 2-year programs transition to 4-year institutions.  Associate nursing graduates should be encouraged to enroll in baccalaureate programs.

· Professional organizations should work with schools to promote enhanced admissions policies, cultural competence training and minority student recruitment.

· To remove financial barriers to nursing education, funding organizations should provide scholarships, loan forgiveness and tuition reimbursement programs.

· Congress should substantially increase funding for diversity programs within the National Health Service Corps and Titles VII and VIII of the Public Health Service Act.

Diversity Friendly

Meanwhile, nursing seems to be friendly to workers who are minorities.  

A study by Vanderbilt University nursing researcher Peter Buerhaus, PhD, RN, FAAN, showed that part of the 9 percent increase in the nursing workforce from 2001 to 2002 was due to nurses over 50 returning to the hospital.  

Hospitals are making work environments more supportive for older workers. For example, some offer scheduling flexibility and reduced physical requirements.

In addition, the acute nursing shortage and innovations such as talking thermometers have enabled nursing programs and employers to hire people with vision and hearing loss or impaired mobility.

A 2003 Bureau of Labor Statistics survey showed that Hispanics - 13.7 percent of the U.S. population - comprise just 4.4 percent of all medical records and health information technicians, 2.8 percent of pharmacists and 1.3 percent of emergency medical technicians and paramedics. Blacks (12.8 percent) comprise 2.6 percent of physical therapists, 1.3 percent of opticians and less than 1 percent of dental hygienists.

Asians, who make up 4.2 percent of the U.S. population, are represented at that rate or higher in most healthcare segments - particularly physicians and surgeons (16.1 percent), and clinical laboratory technologists and technicians (12.3 percent). However, they are underrepresented as licensed practical and vocational nurses (3.6 percent), dental hygienists (1.4 percent) and dispensing opticians (1.3 percent).

Source: Advance for Nurses

Topics: diversity in nursing, minorities, diversity, cultural competence

Ethnic Minorities have Lower Cancer Rates

Posted by Alycia Sullivan

Fri, Oct 12, 2012 @ 03:15 PM

ethnicNew research suggests that ethnic minorities in Scotland are less likely to get cancer than white Scots.

According to data gathered by researchers from the University of Edinburgh, the rate of cancer in Indian men living in the country was 45.9% of that of white Scots, whereas the rate among Chinese men was found to be 57.6% in comparison.

The investigation, which examined ethnic variations in the rate of cancer using figures from the Scottish Cancer Registry, the NHS and the 2001 Scottish Census, revealed the lowest rate of lung cancer to be among Pakistani men living in Scotland, at 45% of the rate for white Scots.

People from Scotland’s Pakistani community were found to have the lowest rates for colorectal, breast and prostate cancers

Professor Raj Bhopal, of the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for Population Health Sciences, said: “Cancer rates in migrants and their children tend to become similar to those in the local population. Despite their long residence in Scotland, however, ethnic minority groups have lower rates of cancer than the white Scots.

“There is much to learn here that could benefit the whole population, which could improve everyone’s health.”

The results were published in the journal BMJ Open.

Topics: risk, minorities, less likely, ethnic, cancer

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