Problem Three: Lack of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in our Healthcare Teams

Problem Three: Lack of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in our Healthcare Teams

In this series of blog posts about the three problems Mentor Me Healthcare is solving, we have discussed our massive and worsening healthcare worker shortage and the resulting Emergency Room closures and staff distress  it is causing. 

We have reviewed the wasted talent of the many internationally educated health professionals (IEHPs) that are here in Canada. They face an arduous, costly process which prevents 47% (2) of them from becoming licensed. Those like Dr. Khaled Salar are unable to work while they could be working in the profession they love and providing much-needed care to Canadians.

Lastly, there is an ongoing lack of diversity in our healthcare workforce. Racialized Canadians remain substantially under-represented in all positions and are extremely under-represented in leadership roles.  An African Canadian friend, surgeon, professor and frequent speaker at conferences mentioned recently that he has been mistaken for a hospital cleaner while waiting to deliver a lecture. Not once, but on multiple occasions. Significant biases remain and many people still resist the idea of recognizing them. Creation of diverse, inclusive teams enables us to think differently.  Many of us feel deeply that equity is an important value however we are not yet achieving it in our healthcare workforce or leadership teams. We can do more.

Diversity in healthcare is good for all of us. Specifically, it creates improved health outcomes especially among marginalized groups that have higher incidence of disease and worse cases of disease due to the social determinants of health and bias among healthcare providers.

In addition to improved health for vulnerable community members, diverse teams enable: 

1 – Increased comfort level with treating clients from all backgrounds

2 – Enhanced empathy and understanding of a variety of value sets

3 – More innovation and creativity due to considering more options and perspectives

4 – Increased trust and likelihood to seek care when seeing oneself represented

5 – Higher staff retention due to feeling welcomed and accepted

6 – Improved communication with clients and colleagues with different language skills

7 – Increased engagement with colleagues, patients, families and communities

To learn more about these important benefits for all of us read this well-written blog: Cultural Diversity in Healthcare | USAHS

How does Mentor Me Healthcare help solve this important issue so that we can all benefit from diverse, high-functioning teams of healthcare professionals?

Mentor Me Healthcare aims to help every internationally educated health professional (IEHP) new to Canada become licensed as quickly as possible. We aim to provide supportive, personalized, flexible mentorship to guide them.

Want to help create more diverse teams and better health for all Canadians? Take action today.

Are you an IEHP? Sign up as a mentor to help others or as a mentee to find your match and become licensed as soon as possible.

Are you a healthcare worker or manager?  Like Mentor Me Healthcare. Share our posts. Spread the word. Talk to your organization about partnership with us.  Let internationally educated friends and colleagues know that being a mentor has so many benefits! Our next post will highlight one talented mentor and explore the benefits mentorship brings to individuals and the community. 


  1. Oct. 2022: Inside ERs at a breaking point, staff provide care while juggling shortages and closures | CBC News
  2. June 2022: ON360 Transition Briefings 2022 – Improving Access to Internationally Educated Health Professionals – Ontario 360
  3. Aug. 2022: Foreign-trained physicians frustrated by roadblocks | CBC News
  4. March 2022: Diversity among health care leaders in Canada: a cross-sectional study of perceived gender and race | CMAJ
  5. March 2021: Diversity in Healthcare and the Importance of Representation
  6. July 2020: What are the Advantages of a Diverse Workforce?
  7. Aug. 2019: Promoting Inclusion, Diversity, Access, and Equity Through Enhanced Institutional Culture and Climate | The Journal of Infectious Diseases | Oxford Academic
  • Share:


Author Since: 30 June 2022