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The Equality Delivery System for the NHS (EDS)

"The Equality and Diversity Council, which has sponsored the Equality Delivery System, and all those in the NHS who have developed it, are to be congratulated. The EDS will greatly help the NHS meet the requirements of the public sector Equality Duty. This is a good example of how different parts of the public sector can implement the Equality Duty in a way that fits with their own circumstances, and their wider public service objectives."

Government Equalities Office, July 2011


Paula Vasco-Knight
Paula Vasco-Knight

“I am proud to be the Senior Responsible Officer for the EDS and am determined to build on the fantastic work that has been done in getting the EDS developed and rolled out across the NHS.  I want to thank the many, many people who have been involved in EDS including my predecessor in this role, Tim Rideout, EDS SRO and Maqsood Ahmad and the team who worked in the EDS Programme Office until September 2012.

I strongly believe that, when used effectively, the EDS is a valuable tool that will support all NHS organisations to meet the public sector Equality Duty and better understand their local communities and workforce to deliver health and care services that are personal, fair and diverse, living the NHS Constitution values in an NHS where everyone counts.”




For further information about the EDS, email edssupport@nhs.net

  • For further information about the EDC go to the Dept of Health webpage on EDC

  • For further information specific to East Midlands go to the EDS East Midlands page 


Patient in bed


The EDS was commissioned by the (former) Equality and Diversity Council, chaired by Sir David Nicholson, Chief Executive if the NHS. 

The EDS is the cumulation of 18 months work, with huge involvement from patients, carers, volunteers and those who work in the NHS.

 The EDS takes its inspiration from existing work, including that of NHS North West. 

The EDS is a tool kit that can help NHS organisations improve the services they provide for their local communities, consider health inequalities in their locality and provide better working environments, free of discrimination, for those who work in the NHS.  The purpose of the EDS is to drive up equality performance and embed it into mainstream NHS business.  It has been designed to help NHS organisations, in the current and emerging NHS structures to meet:

  • the requirements of the public sector Equality Duty

  • equality aspects of the NHS Constitution

  • equality aspects of the NHS Outcomes Framework

  • equality aspects of CQC's Essential Standards

  • equality aspects of the Human Resources Transition Framework

Please note that use of the EDS does not automatically lead to better equality performance.  For this to happen, the EDS must be used well and it is strongly recommended that it is championed by committed leadership with a workforce that is supported to be confident and competent in dealing with equality.                                                                                                              

If you have any queries about the Equality Delivery System and cannot find the information on this website or you would like to know what is happening in your area please contact your Strategic Health Authority equality lead:


Midlands and East
Gregory Price
Tel: 01223 597654
NHS East of England website - equality and diversity

East Midlands and West Midlands
Maqsood Ahmad
Tel: 07920 540 909
NHS East Midlands website - equality and diversity
NHS West Midlands website - equality and diversity

Liz Delauney
NHS London website - equality and diversity

North East
Yasmin Khan
NHS North East website - equality and diversity

North West
Shahnaz Ali
Tel: 0161 625 7331
NHS North West website - equality and diversity

South Central
Anjum Gray
Tel: 01635 275 667
NHS South Central website - equality and diversity

South East Coast
Trish Pashley

South West
Michail Sanidas
Tel: 01823 361 258
NHS South West website - equality and diversity

Yorkshire and Humber
Gordon Smith
Tel: 0113 295 3145

NHS Yorkshire and Humber website - equality and diversity

Resources & EDS Documents

EDS documents
Please find below:


EDS Newsletter
The EDS newsletter, EDS News, is  in the section marked News & Events

NHS Commissioning Board Guidance                                                                                                                                         The NHS Commissioning Board has published information to support applicant Clinical Commissioning Groups in making declarations of compliance; it includes the public sector Equality Duty and the EDS.  Click here for the Information to support applicant CCGs in making declarations of compliance

Guide to good engagement practice
Please find below the NHS Midlands and East guide to 'Good engagement practice in the NHS'

A guide to good engagement practice for the NHS
Click on the picture above to view the good engagement practice guide
Evaluation of the first year of the Equality Delivery System: 12 November 2012
The first anniversary of the launch of the Equality Delivery System (EDS) by Sir David Nicholson is marked by the publication of the report ‘Evaluation of the equality delivery system for the NHS’ which looks at how the EDS has been adopted in NHS organisations.
Produced by Shared Intelligence, this report highlights the improved local engagement and awareness of equality across the NHS workforce as a result of the EDS. The report also identifies areas where lessons can be learnt to ensure that the EDS continues to make a real difference for patients and staff.
The report is now available at: http://www.sharedintelligence.net/equality-delivery-system/case-study/
Click here to see the letter from Paula Vasco-Knight, EDS SRO 
Click here to see information on the NHS Commissioning Board web site.
If you have any questions or comments please email the EDS mailbox at:    edssupport@nhs.net



EDS Newsletter
The EDS newsletter, EDS News, is now available. It has been created to keep you informed of the latest news and developments regarding the Equality Delivery System. The latest edition and back issues of EDS News can be found below.

Click on the picture to view Edition 1 of the newsletter
EDS News Edition 1
Click on the picture to view Edition 2 of the newsletter
EDS News Edition 2
Click on the picture to view Edition 3 of the newsletter
EDS News Edition 3
EDS News Edition 4 front page
EDS News Edition 4