Advancing the diversity and inclusion agenda in healthcare organizations: The case of German university hospitals


  • Mariam Gobianidze
  • Jordan Hammond
  • Kira Jürgens
  • Katharina Reisser
  • Valia Kalaitzi



Introduction: Diversity and inclusion (D&I) challenges in the hospital workforce continue to pose threats to an inclusive work environment. Acknowledging the benefits of a diverse and inclusive healthcare workforce, the Association of German University Hospitals signed the German Diversity Charter to encourage its member hospitals to apply policies to cultivate such a workplace. This policy brief explores the implementation of D&I policies aligned with the Charter in six university hospitals in Germany, aiming to identify the policy gaps and provide recommendations for improvement.

Policy Options: The Charter´s commitments include a shared organizational vision of D&I as a source of great potential and the significant support of the senior management. It also includes D&I in employment processes, open communication about policies, and active employee engagement. Overall, a comprehensive D&I strategy has been shown to be vital for sustainable change. However, not all the hospitals have signed it, nor do all fully adhere to its policies. Therefore, recommendations are provided for the Association to support their constituents in working toward comprehensive D&I policies.

Recommendations: Most importantly, the Association should further promote D&I awareness, enhance the support to the hospitals to improve D&I activities, and lead and monitor the implementation and outcomes of the adopted D&I strategies and policies. The comprehensive approach includes transparency; measurement and evaluation to assess the successes and failures of the strategies; the commitment by senior management to D&I efforts; and bottom-up involvement for employees to share their concerns and get involved.





How to Cite

Gobianidze, M., Hammond, J., Jürgens, K., Reisser, K., & Kalaitzi, V. (2023). Advancing the diversity and inclusion agenda in healthcare organizations: The case of German university hospitals. South Eastern European Journal of Public Health.