Informed Shared Decision Making

Informed Shared Decision Making: An Overview

Informed Shared Decision Making (ISDM) is the underlying framework upon which all of the Division's projects are based. We aim to train health professionals in effective and efficient ways of helping patients take an informed and shared role in making decisions about their healthcare. Operating under the ISDM framework, we also aim to improve patient-health professional communication.

ISDM occurs when a decision about management options for a healthcare problem is made jointly by health professional and a patient. The patient, helped by the health professional to assess the evidence, evaluates the choices available and becomes informed of the risks and benefits. The client is then able to exercise reasonable autonomy and share in the decisions for medical treatment and health care.

  • ISDM merges two trends in health care: patient-centred care and evidence-based decision making.
  • Ethical and legal trends implore that doctor-patient communications involve informed choice.
  • There are many barriers to practicing informed shared decision making including habitual patterns of communication shaped during medical training, perceived lack of time and fear of jeopardizing rapport.
  • Improved health care outcomes can result when patients are involved in decisions about their health care.
 Publications & Presentations