Shared Decision Making – it’s MAGIC!

Spotlight on a co-production case study. Mike Spencer, Assistant Director Patient Experience at the Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, writes about Shared Decision Making.

Shared decision making (SDM) is an approach where clinicians and patients make decisions together using the best available evidence. It involves the provision and discussion of evidence-based information about options, outcomes and uncertainties. There is a strong evidence base for shared decision making and patients value being involved in decisions about choice of treatment options. A partnership between teams from Cardiff and Newcastle Universities, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board and Newcastle upon Tyne NHS Foundation Trust, funded by the Health Foundation, has been exploring ways of making SDM more widespread in clinical practice. Information about the MAGIC programme can be found here http://www.health.org.uk/areas-of-work/programmes/shared-decision-making/ . To encourage this partnership between patients and clinicians the teams encourage patients to “Ask 3 Questions” when faced with a choice. These are:

  1. What are my options?
  2. What are the possible benefits and risks of those options?
  3. How likely are the possible benefits and risks of each option to occur?

Promoting the use of these questions during consultations aims to raise awareness of shared decision making and encourage both patients and doctors to work together in deciding on the best course of action.

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