Shared decision- making (SDM) is the conversation that happens between a patient and clinician to reach a healthcare choice together. Examples include decisions about surgery, medications, self-management, and screening and diagnostic tests.
In this overview we describe the three essential elements of shared decision making: recognizing and acknowledging that a decision is required; knowing and understanding the best available evidence; and incorporating the patient’s values and preferences into the decision.
Shared decision making is a joint process in which a healthcare professional works together with a person to reach a decision about care. It involves choosing tests and treatments based both on evidence and on the person’s individual preferences, beliefs and values.
Shared decision making enables a clinician and patient to participate jointly in making a health decision, having discussed the options and their benefits and harms, and having considered the patient’s values, preferences and circumstances.
Shared decision-making (SDM) tools are designed to help patients and clinicians participate in making specific choices among health care options. 11 These tools describe options, benefits, harms, and areas of uncertainty for different health care treatments.
What are the decision making models in healthcare?
This was achieved by exploring the function and related research of the three available models of clinical decision making: information-processing model, the intuitive-humanist model and the clinical decision-making model.
Shared decision-making, therefore, takes place in a relationship that is participatory, collaborative, open, and respectful. The relationship is one in which there are at least two participants: the nurse, as the provider, and the patient.
Steps of shared decision making
- Acknowledge there is a decision to be made.
- Present options and alternatives: …
- Discuss potential risks and potential benefits of each option: …
- Discuss patient values and preferences in light of that information.
- Discuss the effects of different options on the patient’s daily life and goals.
Patients who are empowered to make decisions about their health that better reflect their personal preferences often experience more favourable health outcomes. This can include being less anxious a, quicker recovery and increased compliance with treatment regimes.