Commenting on the announcement of the new Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, Danny Mortimer, deputy chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said:
“We hope the establishment of this new body will signal the beginning of real and lasting change and will be a further step towards ending health inequalities for good.
“Health leaders know all too well the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on people from ethnic minority backgrounds, as well as those living in more deprived areas, but systemic inequality was an issue long before the pandemic and it is vital that it is addressed once and for all. We also know that tackling health inequality needs concerted action across all areas of domestic policy, and hope that this Office will be supported to help all parts of government recognise the role they have to play.
“The Confederation is proud to host the NHS Race and Health Observatory, which is already making important contributions to helping national leaders and our members address the particular inequalities facing ethnic minority communities.
"We look forward to working with Dr de Gruchy and her team on this agenda as well as the other issues facing the communities our members serve. We will continue to support our members and their local partners to help their communities to overcome health disparities, helping people to live longer, healthier lives, especially as the government presses forward with its levelling up agenda.”