Practitioners' views on shared decision-making implementation: A qualitative study

Anshu Ankolekar, Karina Dahl Steffensen, Karina Olling, Andre Dekker, Leonard Wee, Cheryl Roumen, Hajar Hasannejadasl, Rianne Fijten*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Introduction Shared decision-making (SDM) refers to the collaboration between patients and their healthcare providers to make clinical decisions based on evidence and patient preferences, often supported by patient decision aids (PDAs). This study explored practitioner experiences of SDM in a context where SDM has been successfully implemented. Specifically, we focused on practitioners' perceptions of SDM as a paradigm, factors influencing implementation success, and outcomes. Methods We used a qualitative approach to examine the experiences and perceptions of 10 Danish practitioners at a cancer hospital experienced in SDM implementation. A semi-structured interview format was used and interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed. Data was analyzed through thematic analysis. Results Prior to SDM implementation, participants had a range of attitudes from skeptical to receptive. Those with more direct long-term contact with patients (such as nurses) were more positive about the need for SDM. We identified four main factors that influenced SDM implementation success: raising awareness of SDM behaviors among clinicians through concrete measurements, supporting the formation of new habits through reinforcement mechanisms, increasing the flexibility of PDA delivery, and strong leadership. According to our participants, these factors were instrumental in overcoming initial skepticism and solidifying new SDM behaviors. Improvements to the clinical process were reported. Sustaining and transferring the knowledge gained to other contexts will require adapting measurement tools. Conclusions Applying SDM in clinical practice represents a major shift in mindset for clinicians. Designing SDM initiatives with an understanding of the underlying behavioral mechanisms may increase the probability of successful and sustained implementation.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0259844
Issue number11
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - 11. Nov 2021

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Copyright: © 2021 Ankolekar et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


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