National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)
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Patients should be more involved in decisions about their care, says NICE

A new collaborative, made up of the UK’s leading health care organisations including NICE, has set out plans that will help get patients more involved in decisions about their care.

Research has shown that when clinicians and health care professionals work together with their patient, more appropriate decisions are made about their care.

Professor Gillian Leng, deputy chief executive and director of health and social care at NICE, said: “This can lead to improved patient safety, better patient satisfaction and more efficient use of resources.”                                             

Called the ‘Shared Decision Making Collaborative’, the group of organisations made up of NICE, NHS England, the General Medical Council, professional bodies, patient organisations and universities, will work together to ensure shared decisions about care become a reality in everyday clinical practice.

consensus statement and action plan outlines each organisation’s intentions and commitments to promote a move away from paternal medicine, so that care is delivered with the patient, not at the patient.

As part of the collaborative, NICE will look at its guidance to identify points in a clinical pathway where a decision about care needs to be made. Evidence to support that decision will be made available to both the patient and health care professional. 

Tools to help patients make a decision, such as options grids or patient decision aids, will also be embedded into existing guidance. 

Prof Leng said: “It’s important that a culture of shared decision making is embedded into clinical practice. NICE, through our collaboration with other leading health care organisations, will make sure that patient-centred care becomes an everyday reality in our health service.” 

The General Medical Council has said it will incorporate shared decision making into its professional capabilities framework – a framework which sets out the knowledge, skills and behaviours that doctors need.

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