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Shared Decision Making Programme featured on The Guardian

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Steve Laitner, national clinical lead for the Right Care Shared Decision Making Programme talks to The Guardian about how the Totally Health backed project will lead to a better patient experience.

Since its official launch last month the Shared Decision Making Programme has been making waves in certain healthcare circles. 

Totally Health have long been championing the need for greater patient involvement when it comes to their healthcare choices and Steven illustrates this in The Guardian piece.

He discusses the benefits of giving patients more of a say in their treatment and thus empowering them.

"Patients are more likely to stick with a course of action or treatment when they have chosen it, rather than had it foisted upon them, " Dr Laitner noted.

He also found research to support his findings with studies from the US indicating close to 70% of patients questioned preferred making medical decisions with their doctors.

Patients are more likely to stick with a course of action or treatment when they have chosen it, rather than had it foisted upon them

Dr Steven Laitner
National clinical lead for the Right Care Shared Decision Making Programme

As well as the obvious benefits for patients Laitner aslo expects the programme to provide some respite for healthcare professionals.

"Shared decision making can reduce treatment disagreements, lead to more realistic expectations, reduce clinically unwarranted treatments, and potentially reduce litigation."

By embedding the programme into everyday NHS business, the hope is that current and future GP's will refer to a patient decision aid when they go to consult their information system.

Clinicians seem to be in agreement of the positive aspects of the SDM programme. At a recent health conference attended by over 200 delegates, 80% said that they felt more receptive and more likely to implement shared decision making with their patients. 

With both patients and healthcare proffessionals appearing to embrace the SDM programme, the hope is that greater patient independence will soon be part of our everyday healthcare experience.

for more on the piece click here http://www.guardian.co.uk/healthcare-network/2012/oct/03/nhs-patients-shared-decision-making


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