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  1. ITV Report

White male dominance in senior NHS roles 'disgraceful'

The figures have been branded 'disgraceful' Credit: PA

The lack of women and ethnic minorities in senior NHS roles has been branded "disgraceful".

Just 2% of NHS trusts are chaired by people from a black and minority ethnic (BME) background, while under 30% are chaired by women, a report shows.

A "radical transformation" to redress the balance has now been called for by the study, entitled "Action not words - Making NHS boards more representative".

The figures have also been criticised by shadow health minister Lord Grant in the Guardian newspaper.

Lord Hunt has criticised the findings Credit: PA

The lack of women chairs is bad enough. But the BME proportions are disgraceful.

Too many chairmen want to appoint executives who are in their own image.

– Lord Hunt

The report looked at information from around 1,450 board members at 114 trusts, the Guardian said.

Findings showed three-quarters of those chairing NHS trusts are aged 60 or older, less than half of trust executive directors are female, and a mere 4% of executive directors are from a BME background.

The report said: "This is a serious weakness which needs to be rectified as a matter of priority.

"Good intentions and platitudes are not sufficient. There is a clear need for the Government to step in and insist that NHS trust boards undertake a radical transformation to reflect the communities they serve".