What are your patient’s expertise?

Shared-decision making is an agreement between the practitioner and patient which is the foundation for informed consent.  Both the practitioner and patient are experts so together they can make well-informed decisions:

The patient’s expertise:

  1. Experience of illness
  2. Social circumstances
  3. Attitude to risk
  4. Values
  5. Preferences

The practitioner’s expertise:

  1. Diagnosis
  2. Cause of disease
  3. Prognosis
  4. Treatment options
  5. Outcome probabilities

Each set of expertise on their own will not necessarily improve a condition but combining the two will lead to improved clinical outcomes.  Patients will have more knowledge about their condition, more involvement in their care, more satisfaction with their care and self-confidence in their knowledge and self-care skills.  These are very desirable effects with patient’s more likely to benefit from treatment and more likely to tell their friends and family about their osteopath.

The next post will discuss patient’s attitudes, values and preferences and their influence on their care.

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