Shared Decision Making (SDM) is a process in which patients are encouraged by their health professional to participate in selecting the most appropriate health treatments or care management options for their individual needs and preferences. Not being properly informed about their illness and the options for treatment/management is the most common cause of patient dissatisfaction (Coulter & Cleary 2001). Most patients want more information and a greater say in decisions about how they will be treated.
AQuA was commissioned by Right Care on behalf of the Department of Health as one of the three National providers of the Right Care Shared Decision Making Programme 2012-13. The Department of Health Right Care Team has funded 3 work streams to embed Shared Decision Making in routine NHS care;
- Creating a receptive culture for Shared Decision Making
- Developing tools which support shared decision making, and the provision of decision coaching
- Embedding Shared Decision Making in NHS systems and processes
The biggest challenge to embedding shared decision making in routine NHS care is to create a nationwide paradigm shift so patients expect to be routinely involved in decisions about their care. This requires a change in the current patient-clinician dynamic so that clinicians work with patients to encourage and respond to their greater involvement and patients take a stronger interest in being involved. AQuA had the lead for the work stream – ‘Creating a receptive culture’. Further details about the National Programme is available here.
This website contains information for health professionals, information for patients, training videos, recordings of seminars on SDM delivered as part of the national programme, resources to aid the implementation of SDM in healthcare and 3rd sector organisations and case studies of the work completed in 2012/13.
AQuA is working with a number of hospitals and primary care teams on the implementation of Shared Decision Making. Contact AQuA if you would like more information on the practical implementation of this important approach to patient-centred care.