Shared Decision Making (SDM) is a communication technique where the patient and clinician actively participate to make decisions together. In SDM, a clinician provides information about the risks and benefits of a test or intervention and the patient shares their personal values and preferences. SDM applies to situations where there is no single “right” decision.
This training module will help you more efficiently and effectively to use SDM with your patients. Although the materials in this module focus on cancer screening examples, the SDM techniques you learn here can be applied to any situation where patients have more than one medically reasonable choice.
View a 20 minute video, Shared Decision Making in Cancer Screening, that provides an overview of SDM communication techniques, guidance and strategies that you can use in your daily practice!
Download our helpful SDM training handouts (PDF), including tips for effective SDM conversations, sample phrases to use with your patients, strategies for communicating risks and benefits, and instructions on how to use patient decision aid tools.
How can a fish help you remember SDM?
The training introduces three essential communication elements of SDM with an easy to remember acronym – COD!
- Choice talk, which invites the patient to a choice and explains that decisions will be made together;
- Option talk, which provides pros and cons, uses the embedded decision aid tool and checks patient understanding;
- Decision talk, which elicits patient preferences and arranges next steps.
COD Reference: Elwyn G, et al. J Gen Intern Med. 2012; 27(10): 1361 – 1367